MUST: Change not likely after Glazer
The vice-chair of Manchester United Supporters' Trust (MUST) has said he does not expect any change in ownership structure at the club in the near future despite the death of Malcolm Glazer.
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In May 2005, Glazer controversially became owner of United -- previously a debt-free club -- when he used loans against the club's assets totalling almost 800 million pounds to finance his takeover.
There has been significant opposition to the Glazer reign among United fans, despite continued success during Sir Alex Ferguson's reign, but the 85-year-old's death appears unlikely to bring about any significant change at the club.
Glazer was not a member of the United board and had appointed sons Joel and Avram as joint chairmen, with his other children -- Kevin, Bryan, Darcie and Edward -- serving as club directors. The family controls 90 percent of the club shares, which went public on the New York Stock Exchange in 2012.
"I'd be surprised if there was a change [in ownership structure], short term," MUST's vice-chair, Sean Bones, said. "Malcolm Glazer wasn't a board member and his children are on the board, so I don't think that situation changes much."
Bones added: "It would be inappropriate for me to make any comment about the death of Malcolm Glazer as I didn't know him or his family personally.
"However, as a supporter, I am aware of the detrimental effect the Glazers have had on the football club and the huge debt that has been placed on Manchester United."
Born in Rochester, N.Y., as one of seven children, Glazer took over his family business at the age of 15 following the death of his father and went on to thrive in professional business, owning or becoming a substantial shareholder in a number of renowned public companies.
In 1995, he had completed a takeover of NFL franchise Tampa Bay Buccaneers and, although Glazer may not have been universally popular in Manchester, he was a widely respected figure in his homeland.
During his ownership of Tampa Bay, they achieved seven playoff berths, five playoff victories and a Super Bowl triumph 12 years ago, and the Buccaneers' official website praised him as a "pioneering thinker" and a "dynamic business leader."
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell added: "Malcolm Glazer was the guiding force behind the building of a Super Bowl-champion organisation. His dedication to the community was evident in all he did, including his leadership in bringing Super Bowls to Tampa Bay.
"Malcolm's commitment to the Bucs, the NFL and the people of the Tampa Bay region are the hallmarks of his legacy. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Linda, their six children and the entire Glazer family."
Buccaneers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy also paid his respects on Twitter.
Rest in peace to the driving force that helped transform the organization that changed my life forever. Forever grateful!! RIP Mr. Glazer.- Gerald McCoy (@Geraldini93) May 28, 2014
A statement from Manchester United, meanwhile, read: "The thoughts of everyone at Manchester United are with the Glazer family tonight following the news that Malcolm Glazer has passed away. He was 85. Malcolm leaves behind his wife Linda, six children and 14 grandchildren. Staff at Manchester United extend deep and sincere condolences to them all at this difficult time."
The Buccaneers have announced a private family funeral service will be held in due course.
Information from the Press Association was used in this report.