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Page last updated at 11:35 GMT, Friday, 11 February 2011

Manchester United deny reports of takeover approach

Joel Glazer (left), Bryan Glazer (centre) and Avram Glazer
The Glazer family acquired Man Utd in 2005

By Mandeep Sanghera

Manchester United have denied claims that a £1.6bn bid has been made for the club by buyers from the Middle East.

Reports have suggested owners the Glazer family are close to agreeing a deal to sell to a Qatari group.

But a United source told BBC Sport: "There has been no approach and one would not be welcome because the club is not for sale."

United's local rivals Manchester City were taken over in 2008 by Sheikh Mansour of the United Arab Emirates.

He has pumped around £1bn into the club in his attempt to turn them into a leading force in world football.

United were bought by the Glazers for £790m in May 2005 and came third behind Real Madrid and Barcelona in a global Football Money league table released on Thursday, with City up from 20th to 11th place.

The list was put together by accountancy firm Deloitte and based on revenues for the 2009/2010 season.

However, while they have continued to generate cash, the Glazers have been criticised for loading excessive debt on the club.

And, despite protests from fans' groups, the Glazer family did receive the backing of United boss Sir Alex Ferguson last July following the Red Knights, a group of wealthy supporters, putting their plans to try to buy the club on hold in June.

The latest links over the ownership of current Premier League leaders United come ahead of their latest meeting with City on Saturday.

City are five points behind United having played a game more going into the hugely-anticipated match at Old Trafford.

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see also
Man Utd 2-1 Man City
12 Feb 11 |  Premier League
Real top football rich list again
10 Feb 11 |  Business
Man Utd owners set to repay loans
16 Nov 10 |  Man Utd
Ferguson defends Man Utd owners
29 Jul 10 |  Man Utd
Glazers receive backing from Gill
03 Mar 10 |  Business
Ferguson rejects Red Knights link
07 Mar 10 |  Man Utd
Glazer wins control of Man United
12 May 05 |  Business

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