Manchester United Will Allow Soccer Fans to Buy Shares in Club

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Manchester United will allow its fans to buy shares in the club, in the latest repercussion of a failed move by soccer giants to form a breakaway Super League in Europe.

The club agreed with a supporter group to start a program offering a new class of shares that carry the same voting rights as those held by its owners, the Glazer family, Manchester United said in a statement. The move would allow supporters to build a meaningful ownership stake in the club, it said. There will also be a new fan advisory board, designed to give supporters more influence over the organization.

Some of Europe’s biggest soccer clubs came under fire this year when they attempted to start a breakaway league. The plans eventually failed as clubs steadily withdrew from plan amid widespread uproar. Supporter groups have since demanded a greater say over how their clubs are run.

“As owners, we want exactly the same thing as the fans -- a successful team and a strong club -- and we want to work in partnership to achieve those objectives,” Joel Glazer, Manchester United’s executive co-chairman, said after a meeting with supporter groups.

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