Manchester United Stock Soars to One-Year High on Hopes Fans to Return

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Manchester United Plc shares rose to a one-year high amid hopes the soccer team will soon be playing in packed stadiums.

The New York-traded shares jumped as much as 6.9% Friday in a sixth-straight day of gains after U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson this week announced plans to let as many as 10,000 fans into the country’s largest arenas as early as May 17 and potentially remove all social restrictions by June 21.

Manchester United Stock Soars to One-Year High on Hopes Fans to Return

United’s Old Trafford is among Europe’s biggest soccer stadiums, with a capacity of about 76,000. The company earned about 111 million pounds ($155 million) in matchday revenue in the year ended June 30, 2019, the last full year before the spread of Covid-19 wiped out much of that income.

The team, meanwhile, is enjoying one of its most successful seasons in recent years, sitting second behind local rivals Manchester City in the Premier League. And the club learned Friday that it will face Italian giant AC Milan in the next round of the Europa League, the continent’s second-most prestigious knockout tournament.

Friday’s gains extend the advance this week about 17%, the most for the shares since March last year, and lifted the stock to highest since Feb. 25, 2020. It’s been a strong week for U.K. travel and leisure stocks more broadly, inspired by the reopening plans, with airline EasyJet Plc and cinema chain Cineworld Group Plc also seeing double-digit percentage gains.

Man United is due to report second-quarter results on March 4.

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