Manchester United could form part of a multi-club network alongside Paris Saint-Germain and Sporting Braga if they are brought under Qatari ownership in the near future, according to reports. The Red Devils are currently in the process of finding new owners, with a proposed takeover expected to occur before the start of next season if everything goes to plan over the coming weeks and months.
Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani held talks with United bigwigs earlier this month and recently submitted a new bid for the club, with his Qatari consortium aiming to beat Sir Jim Ratcliffe in the race to succeed the Glazer family in the driving seat at Old Trafford. It seems as though United could be integrated into a network of clubs if a Qatar-led takeover happens, with the Red Devils in line to be placed at the summit of a multi-team model, according to the Daily Record.
It is said that senior Qatari executives could deploy Braga as a feeder club for both United and PSG, with the French giants owned by Qatar Sports Investments (QSI) and chaired by Nasser Al-Khelaifi. Under the plans, elite prospects would be signed from European and South American clubs before moving to Portugal with Braga in order to gain experience at first-team level.
The best Players would then be transferred up the multi-club system to either United or PSG, with Braga also part-owned by QSI after selling a 21.67 per cent stake to the firm back in October. Antero Henrique, who previously worked as PSG's sporting director and is currently in charge of the Qatar Stars League, is thought to have been tasked with devising the plans in order to take advantage of Qatar's growing investments in Europe.
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United, PSG and Braga are all placed to qualify for next season's Champions League as things stand, with their proposed network able to emerge as one of the most powerful alliances in world football. Meanwhile, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin recently hinted that the governing body's rules on multi-club networks could be relaxed in the near future, which would come as a significant boost for the Qatari group in the running to buy United.
"This multi-club ownership question is an interesting question, I think we should think about it for the future and see what to do," said Ceferin when quizzed on a potential Qatar-led takeover of the Red Devils earlier this month.
"There is more and more interest for this multi-club ownership and we shouldn’t just say no for the investments, but we have to see what kind of rules we set in that case because rules have to be strict. We have to rethink the current rules. I think it has to be quick because everything has to happen quick in football."
It remains to be seen how the situation will play out between now and the start of next season, with the Glazers set to decide their next course of action at some point over the coming days. United's current owners have appointed the Raine Group to oversee the takeover process and could either name a preferred buyer or request a third round of bidding, with none of the offers believed to have matched the Glazer-imposed asking price of around £6billion as of yet.
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