What the papers say

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Read the latest Manchester United news, transfer rumours, match reports, fixtures and live scores from the Guardian
Updated: 4 hours 29 min ago

Sir Jim Ratcliffe expresses interest in buying Manchester United

Wed, 08/17/2022 - 20:43
  • Ineos owner is potential buyer if Glazers are willing to sell
  • ‘We’d be interested in long-term ownership,’ says spokesperson

The billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe, one of Britain’s richest people, has stated an interest in buying Manchester United from the club’s beleaguered owners, the Glazer family.

Ratcliffe, who is from Greater Manchester, had previously wanted to purchase Chelsea from Roman Abramovich but has now turned his attention to United.

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Cineworld’s story has shareholders watching through their hands | Nils Pratley

Wed, 08/17/2022 - 19:03

The cinema chain made a high-risk bet on audiences flooding back but is now forced into painful restructuring

One can’t call it a major twist in the plot in the disaster movie for investors that is Cineworld, owner of 750 cinemas in 10 countries. A possible “comprehensive deleveraging transaction” – in other words, a hefty whack for shareholders – has been a threat ever since Covid arrived.

Even pre-pandemic, the company was up to its neck in debt, having been run as an acquisition machine by chief executive Mooky Greidinger, who controls a fifth of the shares with his family. At the last count at the end of 2021, the debt figure was $4.8bn (£4bn), ignoring lease liabilities, which is one hell of a sum when revenues for the year were only $1.8bn.

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The Fiver | Manchester United, Elon Musk and the bored squillionaires club

Wed, 08/17/2022 - 16:28

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Late last night, Elon Musk, the bored squillionaire with deeper pockets than a Gulf state and an ego to match, rolled up to Old Trafford in his electric jalopy and started performing donuts in the car park. Look at me, everyone, his actions seemed to be saying. Look at me, look at me, look at meeeeeeee. But nobody looked at him. They were all staring at the current Premier League table with glazed [Glazered? – Fiver Ed] looks on their faces. So poor Elon had to go home and get their attention some other way. He did this by announcing on Popular Social Media Disgrace Twitter: “I’m buying Manchester United ur welcome.” There, that snapped them out of it! Everybody looking now. Clever Elon, who did it all by himself from scratch.

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Manchester United weigh up loan move for Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic

Wed, 08/17/2022 - 13:29
  • Out-of-favour USA winger, 23, also a target for Newcastle
  • Chelsea prepared to let him leave if other signings come in

Manchester United could attempt to bolster their attacking options by trying to sign Christian Pulisic on loan from Chelsea.

Pulisic, who is also the subject of interest from Atlético Madrid, Juventus and Newcastle, has failed to establish himself as a regular starter since leaving Borussia Dortmund for £58m three years ago. The USA winger has not been consistent enough, while he has also struggled with a succession of injuries, and he is open to leaving Chelsea before the transfer window shuts.

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‘I’m buying Manchester United’: Elon Musk ‘joke’ tweet charges debate over struggling club’s future

Wed, 08/17/2022 - 06:35

Billionaire’s claim was welcomed by fans unhappy about the team’s current American owners – but he quickly clarified he wasn’t serious

Tesla billionaire Elon Musk briefly electrified the debate about the future of Manchester United by claiming on Twitter that he is buying the struggling Premier League club – before saying that the post was part of a “long-running joke”.

He did not make clear his views on new coach Eric ten Hag’s controversial insistence on passing out from the back, or whether unhappy star striker Cristiano Ronaldo should be allowed to leave, but he did say that if he were to buy a sports team “it would be Man U. They were my fav team as a kid”.

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Manchester United size up Casemiro move with Adrien Rabiot bid set to fail

Tue, 08/16/2022 - 20:40
  • France midfielder’s wage demands likely to scupper move
  • Football director John Murtough exploring Casemiro bid

Manchester United’s attempt to buy Juventus’s Adrien Rabiot is almost certainly off because of the midfielder’s wage demands, and Real Madrid’s Casemiro is being explored as an alternative to strengthen this department of Erik ten Hag’s squad.

United had reached an agreed fee with Juventus of an initial £15m for Rabiot but the 27-year-old player’s mother and agent, Veronique, wished him to be paid more than many of the club’s top earners such as Bruno Fernandes, who receives around £240,000 a week. This is because the Frenchman is a free agent next summer.

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Thirty years of growth, globalisation and goals in the Premier League

Tue, 08/16/2022 - 14:03

The first season began with two defeats for Manchester United. A lot has changed but some things stay the same

By Richard Foster for The Football Mine

When Robert Warzycha scored Everton’s second goal in the 80th minute of their match against Manchester United on Wednesday 19 August 1992, he helped the Toffees secure all three points at Old Trafford. Mo Johnston added a third in the final minute to consign United to their second consecutive defeat of the season. Until this season, it was the only time United had lost their opening two games of a Premier League campaign. However, back in 1992-93, they went on to win the title comfortably, losing just four of their remaining 40 matches to finish 10 points clear of second-placed Aston Villa.

Warzycha’s goal at Old Trafford made him the first player from outside the British Isles to score in the Premier League. The Poland international was one of only 13 foreign players in action during the opening weekend of its inaugural season. Only two of those 13 were from outside Europe – Ipswich’s Canadian goalkeeper Craig Forrest and Liverpool’s Israeli striker Ronnie Rosenthal.

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‘A fish rots from the head’ – United fans plan protests before Liverpool game

Tue, 08/16/2022 - 08:00
  • United fan group The 1958 also plans protests
  • Supporters unhappy after two defeats at start of season

The 1958, a Manchester United fan group, will stage a fresh protest against the Glazers before Liverpool’s visit to Old Trafford, with the Manchester United Supporters Trust separately branding the American family’s ownership as akin to a “fish that rots from the head”.

After events organised by The 1958 before the opening-day hosting of Brighton and last season’s fixture with Norwich in April, there is expected to be a march to the stadium on Monday 22 August that will aim to arrive across from the club megastore for 7.30pm, half an hour before Erik ten Hag’s team kick off against their fierce rivals.

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Manchester United happy for midfielder James Garner to leave for £15m

Mon, 08/15/2022 - 10:36
  • Erik ten Hag wants to strengthen squad after poor start
  • Frenkie De Jong and Antony remain targets for United

Manchester United will listen to offers for James Garner, with the asking price for the midfielder in the region of £15m. As Erik ten Hag has only Scott McTominay and Fred as frontline players in the position his decision to allow the 21-year-old to leave may be to generate funds for recruits.

After extending his contract with United Garner spent last season on loan at Nottingham Forest, playing 41 times in the Championship as Forest gained promotion to the Premier League via the playoffs.

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Premier League: 10 talking points from the weekend’s action

Mon, 08/15/2022 - 08:00

Erik ten Hag’s Manchester United reign is already in crisis while Leicester may have to make do with what they’ve got

Credit to Thomas Frank and Brentford for a tactical plan expertly executed, improving on the template that brought Brighton victory the previous week. For one older head in the press room, it brought back bitter Manchester United memories of a 5-0 Crystal Palace ransacking that brought the end of Frank O’Farrell as manager in December 1972. For a moustachioed Don Rogers skating across a Selhurst Park bog read Josh Dasilva, Bryan Mbeumo and Ivan Toney in the sun. A historic, celebratory day for Brentford was one of infamy for United. So poor was their display, so ineffectual has Erik ten Hag been that comparisons are being drawn with fellow Ajax alumnus Frank de Boer’s disastrous 77 days at Palace in 2017. Already, Ten Hag is in severe danger of being flushed down a talent vortex that has claimed Jadon Sancho and Harry Maguire. The pair cost £153m between them. Both were dreadful at Brentford, though were far from alone in that. John Brewin

Match report: Brentford 4-0 Manchester United

Match report: Chelsea 2-2 Tottenham

Match report: Nottingham Forest 1-0 West Ham

Match report: Manchester City 4-0 Bournemouth

Match report: Aston Villa 2-1 Everton

Match report: Brighton 0-0 Newcastle

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Erik ten Hag makes United players train on day off after heavy defeat

Sun, 08/14/2022 - 20:12
  • Dutchman punishes team for 4-0 loss at Brentford on Saturday
  • Manager wants more time with squad before Liverpool game

Erik ten Hag cancelled the planned day off for Manchester United players on Sunday, hauling the squad into Carrington to continue work on implementing his ideas before the next game, which is against Liverpool.

The Dutchman acted after United suffered an embarrassing 4-0 defeat at Brentford on Saturday following on from the opening day loss against Brighton. All Brentford’s goals came in the first half and the result left United bottom of the table after two games.

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A Manchester United clearout is needed. None of the parts fit together | Jonathan Wilson

Sun, 08/14/2022 - 11:19

A keeper that can’t use his feet and forward line lacking mobility – there is not a single element of this side that works

It was less than a year ago that Manchester United won at West Ham to stretch their record unbeaten league run away from home to 29 games. What a happy, uncomplicated time that must seem for them now, in the wake of a seventh successive away defeat with a cumulative score of 2-21.

This is United’s worst away run since 1936. Was the performance in west London worse than the 5-0 defeat at Crystal Palace in 1972? It’s probably too early to be sure, but Saturday was haplessness at a volume that will resonate through the generations.

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'I could have changed them all': Ten Hag blasts Manchester United players after loss – video

Sat, 08/13/2022 - 22:18

The Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag said his side must learn after a humiliating 4-0 loss to Brentford in the Premier League. “We will learn, and we have to learn," said Ten Hag. "But it’s no good, it’s quite clear, and on this level, definitely, that is not the standard." It was United's seventh successive away league defeat, and Ten Hag is the first United manager to lose his first two competitive matches in charge since 1921.

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Erik ten Hag says Manchester United players put tactical plan ‘in the bin’

Sat, 08/13/2022 - 21:38
  • Manager sorry for fans after thrashing at Brentford
  • ‘The manager is responsible as well … and I take that’

Erik ten Hag blamed “individual mistakes” and admitted Brentford were far hungrier as his Manchester United team crashed to a second consecutive defeat at the start of the Premier League season.

Brentford racked up four first-half goals in a disastrous opening 35 minutes for United, an error from David de Gea for Josh Dasilva’s opener setting the tone and Ten Hag said: “Brentford were more hungry. We conceded goals from individual mistakes. You can’t have a tactical plan but then put it in the bin.”

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Brentford turn up the heat on dismal Manchester United in 4-0 humiliation

Sat, 08/13/2022 - 19:38

Manchester United are in crisis. There can be little doubt. Beyond the bare statistics of becoming the first United manager to lose their first two matches since 1921 and presiding over the worst start to a Premier League season in 30 years, Erik ten Hag’s reputation is already tattered. He will need to be an exceptional manager, a man of considerable moral courage, to recover from this.

Beads of sweat glistening on his bare head, London evening sun beat down on the Dutchman as Brentford tore United asunder, gleefully taking them apart in the first half. It was as bad as anything produced in the dog days of David Moyes, Louis van Gaal, José Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjær, and far worse than any performance under Ralf Rangnick, the much-derided immediate predecessor.

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Brentford v Manchester United: Premier League – live!

Sat, 08/13/2022 - 17:38
  • Premier League updates from the 5.30pm BST kick-off
  • And feel free to drop Scott a line with your match thoughts

2 min: After a hectic ping-pong start, United put the first move of the afternoon together. Rashford turns into space and feeds Ronaldo down the middle. Ronaldo goes over in the general environs of Mee, and wants a free kick just outside the box, but he’s not getting one.

United get the ball rolling. A fantastic atmosphere at a sweltering Gtech Community Stadium.

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Erik ten Hag admits Manchester United ‘have to act’ in transfer market

Fri, 08/12/2022 - 22:30
  • Manager insists there is no panic but says signings are needed
  • Interest in Rabiot and Arnautovic has provoked scrutiny

Erik ten Hag has denied there is panic inside Manchester United regarding recruitment but admitted that with less than three weeks until the transfer window closes, the club “have to act”.

United have so far signed Christian Eriksen, Lisandro Martínez and Tyrell Malacia, with the club hopeful of adding Juventus’s Adrien Rabiot. They also retain long-term interest in Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong and Ajax’s Antony. A bid to buy Marko Arnautovic from Bologna was abandoned on Tuesday following the rejection of a £8m offer and significant backlash from United fans to news of the club’s interest in the former West Ham striker.

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Premier League team news: predicted lineups for the weekend action

Fri, 08/12/2022 - 17:01

Get the lowdown on the second round of top-flight fixtures

Saturday 3pm Venue Emirates Stadium Last season Arsenal 2 Leicester 0

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Reds rinse and repeat: will we ever break the Manchester United crisis cycle? | Max Rushden

Thu, 08/11/2022 - 14:00

We seem set to be dissecting What’s Wrong At United until the end of time. Here’s a cut-out-and-keep guide to how to do it

Scientists can’t quite agree on how long it will be until the Universe ends. The most trigger-happy astrophysicists have it at around 22bn years, but if we’re lucky it could keep chugging away for 200bn. Earth has slightly less time – becoming a burnt-out lifeless rock in about 5bn, after the sun runs out of fuel and enters what’s known as its “Red Giant phase”.

Which brings us to Manchester United – who appeared to run out of fuel in 2013. As a gaunt, expressionless Erik ten Hag stood in his technical area at Old Trafford on Sunday, it was hard not to feel that this Groundhog Day paint-by-numbers crisis might be put out of its misery only by the demise of the entire planet.

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Adrien Rabiot and a short spell at Manchester City that ended suddenly | Will Unwin

Thu, 08/11/2022 - 08:00

The French midfielder is poised to join Manchester United this summer but 14 years ago he impressed for a short while at City

Adrien Rabiot looks as if he is on his way to Manchester to sign for United. If things had turned out differently, the Frenchman could have been the poster boy for a new era on the other side of town but he managed less than a year in City’s academy as a teenager.

In 2008, a City scout spotted a young Rabiot playing for Créteil in France. City sent representatives to speak with the then 13-year-old Rabiot, who was close to joining Paris Saint-Germain, and his mother, Veronique. Her desire to leave the country meant she was happy to be persuaded by City to move to Manchester and help her son realise his dreams.

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