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SBD Global/September 25, 2013/Facilities

ManU Fans Get Their Way, Glazers Won't Fight Ruling On Old Trafford Status

The Glazer family won't fight listing of Old Trafford as Asset of Community Value.
ManU fans "have scored a long-awaited victory over the Glazer family after the club’s owners conceded defeat in their attempts to fight the listing of Old Trafford as an Asset of Community Value," according to Adam Crafton of the London DAILY MAIL. In August, the Manchester United Supporters Trust "won the initial battle over the contentious club owners after their application to have Old Trafford listed as an asset of community value was approved by Trafford Council." ManU was "furious about the decision and immediately set about securing a review of the decision." However, on Monday evening, it was revealed by the MUST that the club’s lawyers "have now admitted defeat and the listing will stand" (DAILY MAIL, 9/24). In Manchester, Paul Britton reported the club said that "the ruling would not have 'any meaningful impact' on Manchester United and there was 'little point' in a legal fight." In a statement, the club said, “This process was never about leaving Old Trafford. While we maintain it is a wholly inaccurate interpretation of the law, after further investigation, we do not believe the decision to name Old Trafford an Asset of Community Value has any meaningful impact on the Club" (MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS, 9/24).

COMMUNITY ASSET: The PA wrote should ManU ever "decide to relocate" from its home since 1910, it would have to "offer it for sale back to the community." For its part, the club feels that "it has turned into a pointless discussion" as its understanding of the situation is that ManU "could still move, and sell the stadium, but only after offering local clubs the opportunity to pay full market rates for it first." It also contends that, in this instance, ManU as a football club is the community asset and without it, Old Trafford "is merely bricks and mortar." That is "a debatable point given the history of the stadium, although if no team played there, it would evidently not have a worthwhile function" (PA, 9/24).
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