With Manchester United looking set to be sold to one of two prospective buyers, one of them reportedly plans to abolish a certain rule imposed by manager Erik ten Hag in the aftermath of Cristiano Ronaldo's controversial exit.
According to the latest reports in England, United's new owners will be confirmed in the coming weeks, with the club's current owners the Glazer family set to decide between selling the team to British tycoon Sir Jim Ratcliffe or Qatar Islamic Bank chairman Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani.
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The latter is said to have made a bid of £5.5 billion (R133 billion), and has promised to clear the club's £500 million (R12.1 billion) debts, invest in further redevelopment of Old Trafford, and provide significant funds to reinforce the squad.
However, the sheikh's arrival could bring about another major change, as it is said that he wants to do away with one particular rule that was set in place by Ten Hag after Ronaldo's departure in November 2022, the same month the current owners made it public that the Red Devils had been put up for purchase.
According to TeamTalk, the Dutch manager enforced of salary cap of £200 000 (R4.8 million) a week after the Portuguese superstar's contract was terminated by mutual consent in the aftermath of his scathing interview with British broadcaster Piers Morgan, during which he also revealed he did not respect the United boss.
The report claims that the tactician put this rule in place to maintain harmony in the team as Ronaldo was pocketing a record £500 000 (R12.1 million) a week, which Ten Hag believed created a disparity between members of the squad.
It is said the wage cap is currently what Casemiro and Raphael Varane are earning, and the same is being offered in a new deal to Marcus Rashford, while the best-paid player in the team, David de Gea, is being asked to lower his £350 000 (R8.4 million) weekly salary in contract negotiations.
However, Sheikh Jassim reportedly wants the rule abolished should he take ownership of the team as he feels it would be limiting to his big plans to attract superstars to the Theatre of Dreams, with Neymar and Harry Kane among those already linked with the Manchester outfit.
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The "Ronaldo rule" has also left United legend Gary Neville baffled, who said of it: "Capping wages is a radical policy. Rules out [Declan] Rice, [Jude] Bellingham and others in that bracket.
"Any new owners would probably want to enter the running for these types and probably [Kylian] Mbappe as well.
"200k won't get you Rice or Bellingham, let alone Mbappe!"
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