Qatar sheikhs may launch Man U buy-out bid

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London, Jan.17 (ANI): Manchester United could be taken over by sheikhs in Qatar for 1.2 billion pounds.

Sunday Express Sport can reveal that while Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson took advantage of the warmth of Doha to fine tune his players, there was feverish work going on behind the scenes.

Aware that Qatar, with their bid for the 2022 World Cup in mind, has gone football crazy, feelers were put out by United's owners the Glazers about attracting Middle East investment - or finding a potential buyer.

The Glazers may have saddled the club with debts of 700 million pounds after their controversial takeover in 2005, but they know they could make a huge profit if they sold, with even conservative estimates placing the club's present value at around 1.2 billion pounds.

United's short stay in Qatar provided the Old Trafford money men with the perfect opportunity to attract fiscal interest in the club.

Oil and gas reserves have transformed the country into one of the richest in the world. It is seeking a higher profile identity and sees sport as the vehicle to help meet that ambition. (ANI)

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