Qatar buying Manchester United would be a disaster – just look at the state of PSG | Barney Ronay

Putting all but basic football competence aside, the cautious progress made under Erik ten Hag would be destroyed in an instant

And here’s one we made earlier. Please ignore the noises from the basement. We, the sovereign state of Qatar, are here to restore the lost soul of your prized social-sporting institutions. And it’s all going to be fine. There was an unavoidable significance this week in the coincidence of two apparently unrelated events. First the suggestion that Qatar really may have a serious interest in buying Manchester United, or at least enough interest to add its name to the list before Friday’s “soft” deadline. And second the deliciously more-ish scenes of chaos at Paris Saint-Germain as the current Qatari football project confirmed its status as the most thrillingly grotesque entity in European club football.

It is worth stating this simply: Qatar buying United would be an absolute disaster for the team, the Premier League and Uefa. And not just for reasons such as human rights abuses, which nobody really seems to care about, or the fact nation-state ownership is by definition unhealthy, and foreign policy never benign. In the end none of this really seems to cut through. What makes an impact is basic footballing competence. We hear talk already of how “classy” Newcastle’s Saudi owners are, which is no doubt a huge comfort to those the state has classily beheaded, or gay people in Saudi being (classily) tortured.

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