The end of the year should be a football (soccer) spectacle, as the 2022 World Cup is underway in Qatar. But human rights controversies from the host nation have spawned a significant boycott movement, with some people criticizing FIFA alongside Qatar. Against this backdrop, the craziest rumor dropped from a UK tabloid on Thursday. Apple might be in the running to buy famous UK soccer club Manchester United for $7 billion.
According to Daily Star, Apple is interested in buying Manchester United from the Glazers for £5.8 billion ($7 billion). That sort of deal would be Apple’s most expensive purchase to date. Apple paid $3 billion for Beats several years ago.
The Glazers were looking to sell the club for £8.25 billion ($10 billion). But they’ve reconsidered, deciding to accept the highest bid.
Manchester United is one of the biggest soccer clubs in the UK and Europe. It’s where David Beckham shined before moving to Real Madrid. And where Cristiano Ronaldo played in his early years, under the same number 7 jersey as Beckham.
Interestingly, Ronaldo has been back at the club for a few years. But he’s currently involved in a massive fight with management. Manchester United could use a coach like Ted Lasso for this Ronaldo problem.
It’s unclear why Apple would be interested in buying Manchester United. Apple did make a big deal of soccer with the help of its Apple TV Plus original Ted Lasso. The company even launched a podcast based on the TV show to celebrate the World Cup.
The tabloid says Tim Cook is “keen to explore the opportunities owning Manchester United could provide.” Apple will reportedly line up talks with the banks appointed to oversee the sale.
The report speculates that Cook might have Apple fund a new “state-of-the-art” stadium for Manchester United.
It’s unclear when the deal might go through, but the Glazers are unpopular with fans. The report indicates the Glazers want to sell. They will reportedly hold talks with interested parties next month before drawing up a shortlist of potential buyers.
If Apple is in the running for buying Manchester United, we should hear more details in the near future. A deal like this would make Manchester United the wealthiest club in the world.
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