The Daily Mail claim that the impending full takeover of Leeds United by the San Francisco 49ers is in doubt after interest emerged from a Middle Eastern consortium – but interest is said to be at the very ‘early’ stages in Leeds.

As things stand, the 49ers own 44% of Leeds. Andrea Radrizzani has relinquished a bit more of his overriding majority over time. He now boasts just 12% more than the 49ers, with 56%. The 49ers are set for full control from January 2024.

That agreement is in place, meaning Radrizzani is planning to leave the club in 12 months. But a move to see the 49ers take over is in doubt. That is because a group from the Middle East are looking to blow the 49ers out of the water.

The agreement between Radrizzani and the 49ers for January 2024 does rely on Leeds staying in the Premier League. As things stand, Leeds are two points above the drop zone – but are in 14th and have a game in hand over their rivals.

Of course, Middle Eastern owners are becoming more common in the Premier League. Newcastle, Manchester City, Aston Villa, Fulham and Leicester all have owners from the Middle East. Leeds could be the next ones in line.

(Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

49ers takeover in doubt as Middle East interest in Leeds emerges

It would be an interesting one. Radrizzani – albeit criticised often by the Leeds support – does have the club’s best interest at heart. He will need to determine the wealth of those keen, and their commitment to Leeds going forward.

The 49ers have made that clear. They have shown they are willing to play the waiting game and instead of taking over Leeds completely, they have waited for Radrizzani to slowly abdicate. The 49ers remain the favourites to take over.

Leeds United v Manchester City - Premier League
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