Manchester United fans are in shock today after reports from people living near their Old Trafford ground spoke of having seen 'For Sale' notices outside the stadium.
The Premier League champions were bought two years ago by the Glazer family for a sum of £790m, and the news will be a jolt to United supporters who had assumed that the new American owners were committed to the long term future of the club.
Interest is said to have come from rival investment groups in China, Dubai and Russia, but head Yank Malcolm Glazer denied that any meetings had yet taken place.
Speaking on the club's website this morning, he said:
"I bought this club as a primary going concern. The acquisition was a good one, but a current downturn in the football market might need a rethink in our strategy. We may consider offers from other interested parties. Come on the Reds."
His son Joel Glazer was a little more forthcoming. He told fans:
"The team have had a disappointing start to the new semester. There has been a downturn in fortunes, and the share price of the commodity has fluctuated wildly. We're left with a stark business choice: downsizing or offloading. We're currently weighing-up our options. Come on the Reds."
Distant relative, Paul Michael Glaser, the actor who played Starsky in the hit TV sitcom Starsky and Hutch, explained:
"I'm Starsky, he's Hutch."