Man Utd consider SELLING Old Trafford naming rights

Suraj Radia
Suraj Radia
  • Updated: 26 Jun 2024 08:01 CDT
  • 2 min read
Sir Jim Ratcliffe, Man Utd, 2023/24

Manchester United are considering a sensational move to sell the naming rights to Old Trafford or a newly-built stadium as Sir Jim Ratcliffe looks to bolster the club’s revenue.

United have held ‘exploratory talks’ with major financial institutions including Bank of America in order to cover a ‘potentially multi-billion pound project’, according to The Athletic.

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It is unclear whether the club or INEOS, the company owned by minority shareholder Ratcliffe, would shoulder the responsibility if money is to be borrowed for the project, with United’s recent financial results detailing a debt of more than €700 million (£653.3m.)

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United have played at Old Trafford for 114 years, with the name having never changed, and the notion that a sponsor could rename the iconic venue would generate major controversy.

In order to avoid any backlash, United may seek an ‘associate partner’ for Old Trafford, in the same way Wembley Stadium is branded by EE in a reported €12m-a-year deal.

The club may also look to raise ticket prices in order to finance any development, having already announced a 5% increase to season ticket costs for the upcoming season.

Will Man Utd change the name of Old Trafford?

Newly-built stadiums such as Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium or Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium have acquired lucrative naming rights, with deals worth more than €400m for both the stadium name and the shirt sponsorship.

However, teams such as Barcelona have protected the name of their stadium in their partnership with Spotify, being called Spotify Camp Nou, which United may also consider in any deals.

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United would consider selling the naming rights on any newly-built stadium, which Ratcliffe is said to prefer, however it would be less feasible due to the cost projected to be around €2billion, while re-developments to Old Trafford could be half that amount.

United’s stadium has come under scrutiny in recent months after a longstanding issue with a leaky roof was exposed during the season, and the facilities have been criticised by fans and players, having not been maintained or developed for a significant period of time.

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