Fans of Manchester United never wanted the Glazers to buy the team. They did anyway.
Now, the fans of the team have seized on the Super League fiasco to push for the Glazers to sell. They won’t sell.
Via Mark Ogden of ESPN.com, the Glazers (who also own the Buccaneers) are “unfazed by the hostility” that emerged on Sunday, when fans invaded Old Trafford and stormed the pitch, forcing postponement of a match against Liverpool.
Ogden reports that the Glazers are “unlikely to sell due to the prestige they place on being owners.” As a result, future protests and disruptions could happen again.
The broader question is whether the dynamic will spread to other teams, other sports, and/or other countries. American fans show their disgust with their favorite teams either by not attending games or by showing up wearing paper bags or holding signs with snarky slogans. The closest any NFL fan base has come in recent decades to a revolt happened in 2005, when a “Millen Man March” happened outside Ford Field to protest the ongoing employment of G.M. Matt Millen.
For American sports teams, the situation with Manchester United bears watching. If more protests happen — and if they ever work — a new tool could become available to fans who may not be able to fire the owner, but who possibly could force him to quit.