A dramatic protest by angry Manchester United supporters that pressured the postponement of a Premier League conflict towards historic rivals Liverpool was the results of a long-running feud with the membership’s American homeowners, the Glazer household. Hundreds of followers managed to make their manner inside Old Trafford on Sunday, chanting “we want Glazers out”, referring to the Florida-based household which have owned the membership since a controversial £790 million ($1.1 billion) debt-leveraged takeover in 2005. It was the third protest by United followers in little over per week.
The protest adopted the farcical collapse of a proposed breakaway European Super League, for which United and Liverpool have been reportedly two of the main drivers behind the mission.
“Let’s be very clear that no-one wants what happened at Old Trafford yesterday (Sunday) to be a regular event,” the Manchester United Supporters’ Trust mentioned in an open letter to co-chairman Joel Glazer.
“What happened was the culmination of 16 years in which your family’s ownership of the club has driven us into debt and decline, and we have felt ever more sidelined and ignored,” the Trust added.
“Yesterday, that frustration reached boiling point,” the Trust added, whereas condemning incidents that left a police officer needing emergency hospital therapy.
The Super League — an try to ensure prime stage European soccer for 15 founder members each season in a closed-shop type event — was broadly condemned not solely by followers, but in addition gamers, governments and governing our bodies.
While supporters of the six Premier League groups concerned have been unified of their contempt for such a mission, arguing it was nakedly motivated by greed, it was considered by many United followers on the newest betrayal of a membership based by a bunch of railway staff in 1878.
Early within the Glazers’ reign, United followers wore the inexperienced and gold colors of Newton Heath, the membership that ultimately grew to become Manchester United 24 years later, as an indication of protest.
A debt-free organisation earlier than the Glazer takeover, the acquisition is estimated to have price United over £1 billion in curiosity, charges and refinancing penalties throughout their possession. Club accounts in March revealed present debt of £455.5 million.
The Glazers additionally personal reigning Super Bowl champions, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
United left behind by rivals
Supporters disillusioned by the Glazer buy even fashioned FC United of Manchester, now a membership in England’s seventh tier, in 2005.
In 2010, the inexperienced and gold protest motion accelerated, with that 12 months’s League Cup remaining at Wembley giving United supporters the platform to air their grievances in entrance of a worldwide viewers.
Those protests coincided with a dip in United’s fortunes following a run of three consecutive Premier League titles, a downturn exacerbated by the retirement of Alex Ferguson in 2013 — the final time the membership lifted the league trophy.
United have been unseated on the prime of the English sport by neighbours Manchester City over the previous decade, with bitter rivals Liverpool successful a sixth European Cup in that point and ending a three-decade look forward to a nineteenth top-flight title.
Anger in the direction of the Glazers has been reignited by United’s half within the failed Super League mission, solely months after Premier League golf equipment rejected ‘Project Big Picture’ — a contentious wide-ranging reform of English soccer backed, once more, by United and Liverpool.
Joel Glazer subsequently “apologised unreservedly” to followers over the Super League misadventure and vowed to “put things right”.
However supporters, who’ve been locked out of grounds for over a 12 months due to the Covid-19 pandemic, on Sunday pressured their manner into Old Trafford and carried placards across the pitch unequivocally declaring “Apology not accepted”.
“You can buy our club but you can’t buy our heart and soul,” learn one among many banners, which additionally demanded the German-style 50+1 possession, a rule stopping outdoors traders from having a controlling stake within the membership.
Some followers let off inexperienced and gold flares as others climbed onto goalposts contained in the stadium earlier than one other group later appeared within the higher tier, having beforehand breached safety on the membership’s coaching floor within the days after the Super League proposals to protest towards the Glazers.
“There’s huge discontent, not just across Manchester United fans but I think for football fans up and down the country, and I think they are just saying enough is enough,” former United captain Gary Neville instructed Sky Sports.
Topics talked about on this article