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Last Updated: Tuesday, 10 May, 2005, 06:33 GMT 07:33 UK
Manchester Utd unveils casino bid
Las Vegas lights
Manchester Utd says the super casino will boost Salford Quays
Manchester United have unveiled ambitious plans to build a "super casino" on land close to Old Trafford.

Despite a massive scale-down by Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell on the number of new casinos to be built throughout the UK, United say their case has merit.

The club cites a massive regeneration of Salford Quays as the reason behind its bid for a licence.

If successful, the bid would create the largest cultural village outside London, the Red Devils claim.

Social issues

Together with a leading hotel, entertainment and gambling company, Las Vegas Sands, United hope to build a luxury five-star hotel, restaurants, health club, sports bar and a regional casino on the Trafford Park side of the ground.

Should the plans meet with approval, it is hoped Manchester United could regenerate a wider area around the stadium, raising the potential for more recreation and entertainment-based businesses.

Commercial Director at United, Andy Anson, said the club was delighted to be working with Las Vegas Sands and Trafford Council.

"If selected, it will provide first class entertainment and accommodation on one of the most famous sporting sites in the world," he said.

"There is a lot of work still to be done and any plans will of course consider the social issues associated with gambling and we will take expert advice on putting an agreed plan in place to deal with those matters."

Trafford Council's executive has agreed in principle to support the joint proposal from the two companies.

United would not be the first company to have a casino tied into their stadium complex.

Coventry City's new Ricoh Arena, which opens in August, has a super casino nearby. The Isle of Capri casino is operated by a Mississippi-based gambling firm.

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