Sir Jim Ratcliffe reportedly wants Manchester United to transform Old Trafford into the 'Wembley of the North' with a spectacular stadium rebuild.
The Ineos billionaire - whose £1.3billion investment in a 25 per cent stake in United is set to be ratified by the Premier League - believes United, Manchester and the North in general should have a world-class arena to rival the iconic London venue.
According to the Daily Telegraph, Ratcliffe could lobby the UK government for 'Levelling Up' funding to help finance the project, which could cost up to £2bn.
A source close to Ratcliffe told the newspaper: 'He feels the club need an absolute state-of-the-art, knock-it-out-of-the-park, 'wow' stadium.
'And we feel there's a strong argument for the country having a top-class major venue in the North - a Wembley of the North.'
The report says Ratcliffe wants to remain on or close to the existing Old Trafford site, which United have called home since 1910.
While a redevelopment and expansion of Old Trafford, which has a present capacity of 74,310, remains an option, it is thought that will simply be 'throwing good money after bad'.
The cost of expanding the Sir Bobby Charlton Stand along one side of Old Trafford is estimated to be around £800million.
Ratcliffe and Ineos chiefs, therefore, are reportedly of the opinion that a full rebuild on a larger scale - with an estimated cost of between £1.5bn to £2bn - may prove more cost effective in the long-term.
The new part-owners have already pledged an initial £237m for investment in United's club infrastructure.
Wembley, the largest venue in the United Kingdom and the second-largest in Europe, holds 90,000 people and presumably a rebuild Old Trafford would match or exceed that capacity.
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