THE EMIR of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, is interested in buying Manchester United.
The Emir is a keen football fan, having bought Paris Saint-Germain in 2011 through Qatar Sports Investment.
The Glazers revealed in November that they were willing to listen to offers for either a stake in the Premier League giants or an outright purchase.
A number of parties have expressed an interest in buying United, which could be purchased for a world-record price for a sports franchise at £4.5billion, or more.
Interest comes from the Far East, Middle East and United States with Raines Group, the merchant bank, tasked with the sale.
However, Friday’s deadline for bids is rapidly approaching, and the Qataris are set to make the first move.
Who is Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim?
Born on June 3, 1980, the Emir is the fourth son of the previous monarch, Hamad bin Khalifa.
He took over as the head of state of the country in 2013, when his father abdicated the throne.
Sheikh Tamim studied at Great Britain’s Sherborne School in Dorset, and at Harrow School.
He then attended the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, where he graduated in 1998.
Both Prince William and Prince Harry of the UK Royal Family attended the same training facility.
Sheikh Tamim is the current owner of PSG through Qatar Sports Investment and has imposed dominance in France.
However, the efforts to establish themselves as Europe’s best haven’t been as fruitful with the Parc des Princes club yet to win the Champions League.
Sheikh Tamim has been married three times and has thirteen children in total.
In total, the Emir has seven sons and six daughters.
What is Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim’s net worth?
Sheikh Tamim is estimated to be worth around £1.6billion alone.
But The ruling royal family’s collective net worth is estimated at around £276bn.
The Thani family hold investments in a number of properties around the world, including London’s Shard skyscraper, Olympic Village, Harrods department store, Canary Wharf, the Chelsea Barracks, and New York’s Empire State Building.
The royals also hold investments in Barclays Bank, British Airways and Volkswagen.
Will Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim bid for Man Utd?
According to Bloomberg, yes.
There have reportedly been talks between the Glazers and the Qatari investors.
The report states the Qatar-based financers are “set to make an offer for Manchester United in the coming days” in a “move that would cement the country’s desire to become a major player in global sports”.
It is said the initial bid is being thrashed out with help from officials at the sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority.
The deeply unpopular Glazers want a world-record £6bn for the Old Trafford giants, who have not won a trophy since 2017 – although that figure may be lowered.
Can Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim own Man Utd and PSG?
There are no restrictions on an owner acquiring multiple clubs at the same time in different countries.
The owners of rivals Man City own another 10 football teams around the world.
So yes, Sheikh Tamim could own Man Utd and PSG.
Can both teams play in Champions League?
Per Uefa rules, no.
Uefa implemented an ‘Integrity of the Uefa Club competitions: Independence of clubs’ rule in 1998 which states that no two clubs participating in a Uefa competition may be directly or indirectly controlled by the same ownership group.
This is defined by:
- The majority of the shareholders’ voting rights in another club in the same Uefa club competition;
- Or, another right to appoint or remove a majority of the directors in another club in the same Uefa club competition;
- As well as, majority of the shareholders’ voting rights (through a shareholders’ agreement) in another club in the same Uefa club competition.
Therefore, if a Qatari group owned United while they and PSG qualify for the Champions League, the ownership group would more than likely have to choose who plays in it.
These rules have been put in to place to protect the integrity of the competition.
However, Sheikh Tamim and Co are looking for ways around that with the bid coming from individual Qatari investors – not being a part Qatar Sports Investment.
That would need to be proved with any ownership test certain to look into potential ties between them.