Anti-Glazer protesters force Manchester United to CLOSE their megastore ahead of their defeat against Brighton… as angry fans continue to call for their American owners to sell the club
Manchester United fans’ protests against the Glazer family have resulted in an Old Trafford megastore being closed prior to their Premier League opener later today.
A video posted on Twitter by anti-Glazer fan account The 1958 shows a number of fans bearing a banner emblazoned with ‘Fight for United’ as fans call for the unpopular owners to sell the club.
United suffered a 2-1 defeat by Brighton in their first Premier League game under new manager Erik ten Hag, having lost 4-0 to the Seagulls at the tail-end of last season under Ralf Rangnick.
A video has been posted on Twitter by the account The 1958 showing a mass protest ahead of Manchester United’s season opener
The build-up to the Red Devils’ first defeat of the season however was overshadowed after a large number of United fans met before the game to protest against club owners the Glazers.
Organised by the supporters group The 1958, they marched from Media City UK in Salford to Old Trafford, where the club shop was forced to close an hour before kick-off.
The group sent out a Tweet videoing the protest saying: ‘Join us en route. Unite with us against this ownership. Never give up hope.’
Supporters also vented their anger before games against Norwich and Chelsea last season
Fans bore a banner which read ‘FIGHT GREED – FIGHT FOR UNITED – FIGHT GLAZERS‘ and the amassed supporters could be heard chanting as they marched, shouting: ‘We want Glazers out! We want Glazers out!’
The supporters group had previously issued a Tweet to their followers asking fans to ‘Keep it legal & peaceful’ as they planned the demonstration before Sunday’s match.
The Glazers, who have been owners since 2005, have regularly taken sums of money out of the club, with many fans furious at their latest £11million pay-out.
Avram (L) and Joel (R) Glazer took £11million in dividends out of the club earlier in June
A statement from the Manchester United Supporters’ Trust in June said: ‘Today the Glazers pay themselves the lion’s share of an £11m dividend at the end of one of the worst seasons in living memory.
‘Reward for failure is poor practice in any business, and totally unacceptable given the current state of things at United.
‘MUST is advocating and pursuing a strategy of engagement with the club and its owners, to get a stronger voice for fans, but this payment is indefensible.
‘We will be making this point, and demanding answers, in our direct meetings as well as through our representatives on the fans’ advisory board and fans’ forum.’
United legend Gary Neville also slammed the club’s owners as he tweeted: ‘The Glazer Family should not be taking £11m in dividends this Friday. It isn’t right with the investment needed in the team, stadium and training ground.
‘The club’s cash position is low compared to previous years. An announcement is needed to halt it for the next three years minimum.’
Ten Hag’s first competitive game in charge of United was already under the spotlight before the protest, and was further scrutinised by world football following the announcement of Cristiano Ronaldo being left on the bench.
Cristiano Ronaldo was left on the bench after limited game time in pre-season for United
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner did not travel with the squad on their pre-season tour of Thailand and Australia and announced his intention to leave the club, although few offers were forthcoming for the Portuguese legend.
The Dutchman handed debuts to new signings Lisandro Martinez at the heart of the defence, and Christian Eriksen as an attacking midfielder flanked by Bruno Fernandes and Jadon Sancho, behind Marcus Rashford.
Boos rang out around Old Trafford on the half-time whistle after the Dutchman’s side fell 2-0 behind by the interval thanks to a Pascal Gross double, and many fans will be asking themselves if anything has actually changed in the dugout.
And although an Alexis Mac Allister own goal in the second half gave the hosts a chance to turn things around, ten Hag’s side slipped to a shocking 2-1 loss on opening day in Brighton’s first ever away win at United.
The year 1958 is significant in the history of United as the club tragically lost eight players in the Munich air disaster after the plane they were travelling back to Manchester on crashed following a European Cup tie with Red Star Belgrade.