Manchester United owners Glazers get backing from Gill
By Bill Wilson
Business reporter, BBC News, Soccerex, Manchester
Man Utd not for sale - Gill
Manchester United chief executive David Gill has dismissed concerns surrounding the Glazer family, claiming the owners were "running the club the right way".
The club's debt level of £716.5m has prompted much unease among supporters, with one group of wealthy fans - "The Red Knights" - targeting a takeover.
But Mr Gill said: "The Glazers do not want to sell and from our perspective are running the club in the right way.
"The owners are very long-term owners... they are not sellers."
The so-called Red Knights include Goldman Sachs economist Jim O'Neill, acting in a personal capacity, lawyer Mark Rawlinson and financier Keith Harris.
Mr Gill said that the group were "credible people" who had "every right to do what they think is right".
But he added there were questions about how a group of up to 40 wealthy individuals would be able to run the club.
There has been criticism of the Glazer regime because a once-debt free company is now carrying large debts.
Manchester United fans have protested against the Glazer's ownership
The amount of debt secured on the club and the Glazers' shareholding in it is more than £700m according to recent accounts.
However Mr Gill said that a recent bond issue which replaced £509m bank debt with a £512m bond provided financial stability going forward.
He added: "Our financial results show that we can live with [our financial] structure, and enjoy the benefits."
Before the emergence of the Red Knights, United's owners were already under fire over their control of the club from the Manchester United Supporters' Trust (Must) - which is running a vocal campaign to bring about a change of ownership.
Chief executive of Must, Duncan Drasdo, said its membership had doubled to about 78,000 people in the past month - with much of that growth coming following the "Red Knights revelation".
People will see that Manchester United will continue to be a well-run club
This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.