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SBD Global/August 2, 2013/Facilities

Council Grants Protection To Old Trafford In Case ManU Owner Glazers Try To Sell

A council "has granted a request by Manchester United Supporters Trust to 'protect' Old Trafford in case it is ever put up for sale," according to the BBC. The club's home since 1910 "will be labelled an Asset Of Community Value." It means the trust "has the right to bid for the stadium if owners the Glazer family ever try to sell it." Trust CEO Duncan Drasdo said, "While we appreciate the owners have no current plans to move or sell Old Trafford, this is a decision that helps to protect fans' interests in the long term, as no one knows what the future holds" (BBC, 7/31). In Manchester, Yakub Qureshi reported lawyers for the Glazer family "had bitterly opposed the move." In a statement on its website, the club said that "the legislation was being wrongly applied and confirmed it had requested an immediate review" (MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS, 7/31). In London, Adam Crafton reported supporters "could be destined for a bitter court battle with the Glazer family." Should the club's appeal win over, MUST "would without question take the case to court through a judicial review, with the trust convinced that the asset" -- Old Trafford -- meets the criteria of the Act. ManU fears that the change to the status of Old Trafford "could have a negative impact or trigger fluctuations in the share prices of the club" on the N.Y. Stock Exchange (DAILY MAIL, 8/1).
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