By Jack Gallagher
Manchester United fans will display a banner to protest potential Qatari ownership of the club during their Premier League clash with Southampton.
Qatari Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani is one of two potential bidders looking to take over from Manchester United, with Britain’s richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe, head of INEOS, also a leading contender.
The former’s offer sparked controversy due to the possibility of becoming state-owned as Manchester City, Newcastle United and Paris Saint-Germain currently are. The problems with the club becoming state-owned largely stem from the problems with human rights in Qatar.
Because of these concerns, Man Utd fans from a local Amnesty International group wanted their voices to be heard during their club’s clash with Southampton, and will unfurl a banner reading: ‘No Qatar sports wash at the United!”
Protest organizer Kathryn Fletcher, speaking to the Independent, explained the reasons for her protest, saying: “I am part of a group of United fans who are deeply concerned about a Qatari takeover of our club.
“Manchester United’s statute states that suppliers shall not use forced labor and shall practice ‘universal respect for human rights and freedoms for all, without discrimination as to age, disability, gender or sexual orientation’ – as is compatible with the Qatari property?
“The Premier League should step in to ensure integrity in the governance of league football clubs – it should not be left to fans to oppose takeovers by owners which could be linked to serious human rights abuses.”
This article was originally posted on 90min.com as Man Utd takeover: Fans protest potential Qatar ownership.