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Manchester United owners the Glazer family set for £11m windfall despite spiralling club debts

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The Glazer are receiving their second £11m dividend of the year (Picture: Getty Images)

Manchester United owners the Glazer family are set to receive a dividend payment of £11m in June, despite the club’s debts rising by 42 per cent in the latest quarterly results.

The Red Devils announced debts of £429.1m, rising by £127.4m over the last 12 months, but the Glazers are still set to receive their second £11m payout of the year, on 3 June, reports ESPN.

The family get semi-annual payments worth $0.09 a share, which total around £11m, and the commitment to pay the June sum was made in February, so the club are going through with it, despite the coronavirus crisis.

The commitment is legally binding and the club do not want to go back on it as they want to show their financial strength during the global pandemic.

In a statement detailing financial results from January 1 to March 31, the club said: ‘Net Debt as of 31 March 2020 was £429.1 million, an increase of £127.4 million over the prior year quarter, due to an overall decrease in cash and cash equivalents and adverse movements in the GBP:USD exchange rate. The gross USD debt principal remains unchanged.’

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The rise in net debt is attributed to a loss in cash reserves due to the £80m signing of Harry Maguire last summer and the January acquisition of Bruno Fernandes.

Specficially, matchday revenue is down by £2.6m and retail revenue by £1.1m, although commercial and sponsorship revenue have both slightly increased.

Bruno Fernandes and Harry Maguire have been costly outlays in the last year (Picture: MB Media/Getty Images)

£15m-£20m is to be repayed to broadcasters after the hiatus, that has kept football off our television screens since March, halving expected broadcasting revenue.

Executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward issued a message of calm after the concerning figures, instead focussing on dealing with the health crisis ahead of economic concerns.

He wrote: ‘Our focus remains on the health and well-being of our colleagues, fans and partners around the world and we are extremely proud of how those connected to the club have responded during this crisis.

‘Since the start of the pandemic, Manchester United and our Foundation have provided assistance to hospitals, charities and schools in our communities, as well as support for frontline workers and vulnerable fans.

‘These actions reflect our core values as a club and the resilience through adversity that we have demonstrated many times throughout our long history and will do so again to weather these current challenges.

‘In that spirit, we look forward to the team safely returning to the pitch and building on the exciting momentum that Ole and the players had previously achieved, while taking all necessary steps to protect public health. Our thoughts remain with all those affected during this unprecedented time.’

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Further explanation in the financial statement read: ‘Manchester United has taken a range of measures to support its communities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including donations to food banks and outreach to elderly and disabled supporters.

‘In addition, the Manchester United Foundation has committed over £1M to community initiatives, including the supply of 60,000 meals for health workers in local hospitals and support for schools and vulnerable children across Greater Manchester. The Club has also used its media platforms to deliver public health messages and to support frontline workers around the world.

‘Operationally, the impact of the pandemic and measures to prevent further spread continues to disrupt its businesses in a number of ways, most significantly in Broadcasting and Matchday operations.

‘Old Trafford and its flagship Megastore operations have been closed to visitors since 20 March 2020 and Museum, Stadium Tour and Red Café operations have been closed since 17 March 2020.

‘Government imposed restrictions have also resulted in the postponement of the Premier League, UEFA competitions and FA Cup competition since 13 March 2020.

‘Postponement of the Premier League and changes to match scheduling has resulted in a reduction in the total broadcasting revenue expected for the season and has impacted broadcasting revenue during the quarter for matches played to date.

‘In addition, during the quarter, Broadcasting and Matchday revenues were impacted due to the postponement of three matches: one away Premier League match, one home Round of 16 Europa League match and one away FA Cup quarter-final match.’

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