Chinese insurer Ping An Insurance Group has denied reports it has been in discussions to buy a stake in Premier League giants Manchester United.
It has been reported by the Sunday Times that a mysterious Chinese buyer has expressed an interest in purchasing a holding in the English club, who are owned by the Glazer family, Omnisport has reported.
According to the report, some of United’s independent shareholders have been contacted.
However, Ping An Insurance Group distanced itself from the rumours on Monday.
“The information is false. Ping An have not been involved in any discussion on purchasing a holding in Manchester United,” Ping An spokesman Sheng Ruisheng said via the 21st Century Business Herald. “And [Ping An’s Chairman and CEO] Mr. Ma Mingzhe has never owned any shares in Manchester United. As a listed company, Ping An release all information in official statements. Please don’t believe rumours.”
The Chinese government owns 13 percent of United’s cross-city rivals Manchester City. Chinese investors, meanwhile, have a majority holding in both major Milan clubs and a range of English Championship teams and other clubs across Europe.
United face Champions League titleholders Real Madrid in the UEFA Super Cup on Tuesday before kicking off their Premier League campaign at home to West Ham on Sunday.
United have been struggling since Sir Alex Ferguson departure in 2013. The club has not won a Premier League title ever since. They are preparing for the second season under Jose Mourinho, the the third permanent manager in four years ago after Sir Alex’s retirement. David Moyes did not last even one complete season and f Louis van Gaal stayed for two unsuccessful campaigns.