Manchester United: 10 Key Points in the Glazer Era
Following recent rumours that the Glazers' ownership of Manchester United may be coming to an end, United fans have been keeping their fingers crossed for an exit of the American family.
While the speculation suggests a takeover from more foreign owners in the shape of the Qatar Royal Family, fans will just take hope in the departure of the Glazers.
These rumours have been repeatedly denied by the club but with unrest growing all the time, the club look like they may have a change in ownership somewhere soon.
Here are the 10 most key points so far in the Glazers' ownership of the club.
The Glazers' stake in the club reached 98 percent, which was enough for a buyout of Manchester United. This led to the Glazer family gaining full control of the club at a final valuation of £800 million.
This was to be the start of the American family's official reign at the club as well as the start of many continuing campaigns against the new owners.
Soon after, the Glazers ended the PLC status of the club removing it from the London Stock Exchange. This was another step that caused much anger amongst Untied fans, causing even more protests against the new owners.
United fans in protest at the Glazers' complete takeover of the club form their own breakaway team, called "FC United of Manchester."
The club first entered the North West Counties League Division Two in 2005. Over the course of the season, the club were very successful earning promotion to the North West Counties League Division One.
After another very successful season, the club secured another promotion to the Northern Premier League Division One North. They also made their debut in the FA Cup in the same season, 2007-2008.
The club won a third consecutive promotion, this time into the Northern Premier League Premier Division. The club are now in their third season in the league, but gained more recognition in the 2010-2011 FA Cup by reaching the second round proper, just one match away from Premier League teams entering the competition.
United win their first Premier League title since the 2002-2003 season. After four years without the league title, Sir Alex Ferguson leads the club to the title again.
This time around, the club had the added help of Cristiano Ronaldo as well as a number of other players that hadn't been around in the 2002-2003 season.
United failed to win any other trophies that year but it signalled the start of a resurgence from the club following a period dominated by newly rich Chelsea and the famous Arsenal "invincibles."
May 2008 and May 2009
In the 2007-2008 season, Manchester United won their second consecutive Premier League title under the ownership of the Glazer family.
In that very same season the club also won the UEFA Champions League for the first time since the 1998-1999 season. The club beat Chelsea in an all-English final on penalties.
In the 2008-2009 season the club completed another double, although slightly less prestigious. The team won their third consecutive Premier League title as well as the League Cup (known as the Carling Cup for sponsorship reasons).
This was the most successful era under the Glazers' short ownership so far.
In Jun. 2009 the protracted transfer saga of Cristiano Ronaldo to Real Madrid finally came to a conclusion as he transferred for a world record fee of £80 million.
The previous world record transfer was set by Kaka, who also transferred to Real Madrid the same summer for a fee of £55 million, making it one of the shortest-held world records.
The transfer angered many Manchester United fans after the way that the Spanish giants had been courting the player beforehand, trying to unsettle him.
United soon set about looking for a replacement.
In Dec. 2009 the club were put under pressure from both fans and the media, claiming that they were under financial strain.
The rumours surfaced when the team walked away from a deal for Partizan Belgrade teenager Adem Ljaji valued at £10 million.
The Glazers denied the club was having financial difficulties despite the transfer collapse.
Regardless of the owners' best efforts, fans were still protesting against the Glazers' ownership of the club still believing that they were under financial strain as a team.
In Jan. 2010, Manchester United fans launched a new green and gold campaign to protest the Glazers' ownership of the club.
These colours became synonymous with the fans "Hate Glazer, Love United" campaign and have regularly been seen at matches ever since.
The colours come from the club's previous incarnation as Newton Heath in the 1800s. The green and gold are meant to be symbolic of the club's roots, hence the reason they were chosen to front the campaign against the Glazers.
In Feb. 2010, soon after the launch of the green and gold campaign, Manchester United fans met with Keith Harris, a significant United fan, to organise a campaign that would hopefully eventually lead to a takeover of the club.
The group of fans hoping to take over the club become known as the "Red Knights" and organised numerous protests and campaigns to raise money and awareness ahead of their attempt to broker a deal.
The campaign continued for months, being fronted by the Manchester United Supporter's Trust and the green and gold campaign.
In May 2010 it became clear that the "Red Knights" would not have the capability or finances to achieve their planned takeover of the club.
Despite having made a bid to take over the famous Premier League club, it looks likely that it will be unsuccessful with the Glazers determined to remain in charge of the team.
The news angered United fans, who began more protests against the Glazers in the hope that they can force their unwanted owners out in a different way and bring a new buyer in.
In Jan. 2010, speculation began to surface that the Qatar Royal Family were interested in making an offer for Manchester United.
The rumours came at a time of massive footballing growth in Qatar, following their win in the right to host the 2022 World Cup and their successful hosting of the 2011 AFC Asian Cup.
The club deny any bids have been received and the Glazers reiterate their stance as not wanting to sell the club.
Regardless, according to the Daily Mail and the Daily Express, rumours continue surfacing of a bid valued between £1.5 and £2 billion. No official statement has been made about receipt of the bid, although the Glazers insist they wish to remain in charge.
The rumours continue into February, giving Untied fans hope for change.
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