Last updated : 27 April 2004 By editor
The billionaire businessman, who owns 2003 Superbowl champions Tampa Bay Buccaneers, has bought a further 4.1million shares.

Glazer's shareholding had stood at 16.69 per cent prior to this announcement to the Stock Exchange. It would have to rise to 30 per cent before he would be forced to make an offer for the club .

Leading financial expert Henk Potts of Barclays Stockbrokers said:

"Manchester United have a fantastic record,"

"At the half-yearly stage profits are up significantly. They have a global fan base of over 50million people but one of the big things is their costs are very much under control. One of the big problems for football clubs has been their costs. As far as I am aware at United, players' wages stand at 41% of revenue. To manage the great conjuring act of football, which is to run a successful side and a successful business model, is very hard to achieve but United are clearly leaders in this field."

Potts said it is difficult to read what Glazer's long-term plans might be but thought it could be one of three options.

"He might be thinking of linking up his sporting franchise in a global business; he simply sees it as an investment, believing there might be a bidder; he could be using it as a stepping stone to making an overall bid himself."

Potts added: "It is really impossible to call at this stage what his strategy might be."