Manchester United are reportedly preparing plans to modernise Old Trafford and increase the stadium’s seating capacity and this could see them accrue £1 billion in debt for the massive project.
Fans of the club have been protesting the state of the stadium, among other things, for the better part of three seasons. They successfully shut down one game and made the Premier League postpone the game when they staged a massive protest at the entrance to the stadium. They are not ready to back down and the club’s board have come to terms with their resolve.
However, fresh reports indicate that the monetary concerns were what kept the ownership from doing the needful before now, according to reports. United are currently £500 million in debt and cannot pool money from their coffers for the project.
“For the future, for investing in a new stadium and a latest-and-greatest training ground we’ve got to do something,” United CEO Richard Arnold said of their struggles to secure funding for the Old Trafford repairs. “We’ve got to get investors in. “I need that to do what I want for the club.
“I’ve got to have more cash now because no club in the world has the money to build a new stadium. You either borrow it or invest it. The money has got to come from somewhere.”
The same reports also indicate that they are now considering the option of accruing debt for the project. One of the options is to take out a mortgage on the facility and another is to sell the naming rights of the stadium, just as Barcelona did with Camp Nou. Whatever options they choose to take, they have already steeled their resolve by first adding the estimate of the restructuring plans to their current debts, which sums it all to £1 billion.
What the fans want the most, however, is for the Glazers family to leave the club. This would mean selling the club to another party and the owners have stood their ground on their answer, which is no.
Their ownership has cost the club to lose £1.3 billion chopped off its market value, causing its stock prices to drop. At the same time, they have made around the same amount in dividends since they took over the club in 2005.
There obviously lies a lot waiting to unfold in Manchester United’s financial drama.