Man Utd fans' group criticises £16m Glazer family dividend

By Simon StoneBBC Sport
Avie and Joel Glazer Manchester United
Manchester United's executive co-chairmen Avie (left) and Joel Glazer. In total, six members of the Glazer family are directors of the club.

A fans' group has criticised Manchester United's decision to pay majority shareholders the Glazers £16m a year.

Shareholders will receive 0.045 cents (£0.03) per share each quarter, the first dividend since United floated on the US Stock Exchange in 2012.

The Glazer family, which owns 83% of United shares, will receive $24.5m (£15.79m) annually.

"This is rubbing salt into the wound," said Manchester United Supporters' Trust vice-chairman Sean Bones.

"Profits from the club should go back into it."

A United spokesman said the Glazers were committed to investing in the team and that the dividend underlined the club's strong financial position.

United estimate they will save $10m annually in interest payments following a refinancing of their debts this year.

The announcement came on the same day United said they were considering selling a further 24 million "Class A" shares.

'The Glazers have cost us £1bn'

In total, there are about 164 million shares in United. Around 83% are Class B shares, which are owned by the Glazer family, while the remainder are Class A shares.

"The Glazer family have already cost us £1bn in interest payments," said Bones. "They are sitting on an asset worth £2bn, which still has debts of over £400m, yet are now milking it for even more. How greedy can you get?"

United spent £113.7m on six new players this summer, recouping £74m, including £44.3m from Paris St-Germain for Angel Di Maria.

What price failing to reach the Champions League?

United released their financial figures on Thursday, in which they recorded a £38m fall in total revenue in the year to 30 June 2015.

It is estimated they lost £35m through their failure to qualify for last season's Champions League.

They qualified for the 2015-16 competition, but lost their opening group game to PSV Eindhoven on Tuesday.

Asked about financial projections, head of corporate finance Hemen Tseayo said: "We have not changed our assumptions."

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