Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman does not intend to buy Manchester United, his minister for media has said.
A report in the English press claimed that Prince bin Salman was pursuing a deal worth £3.8billion to take over United but, in a tweet on Monday, his media minister Turki al-Shabanah said the information was “completely false”.
He added: “Manchester United held a meeting with [Saudi Arabia’s] Public Investment Fund to discuss sponsorship opportunity. No deal has been materialised.”
Sky Sports News reported in October that United were not for sale following talk of interest from the Saudi ruler.
United were bought by the Glazer family in 2005 in a £790m deal. The club is now valued at more than £3billion, but it is understood it would take an offer starting at £4billion to even be considered.
The club has links with Saudi Arabia already, having signed a deal with the nation’s Government in 2017 to help develop their football infrastructure.
Last week, United reported record revenue for the second quarter of the financial year of £208.6m. The club is forecasting annual revenue to be between £615m and £630m.
Prince bin Salman is one of the richest and most powerful men in the world and is understood to be keen to invest in a top European football club.
Saudi Arabia’s neighbours are already heavily involved in football, with reigning Premier League champions Manchester City backed by Abu Dhabi-based Sheikh Mansour and Paris Saint-Germain owned by Qatar Sports Investments.