Now Musk Is Messing With Soccer Fans

Tesla/SpaceX CEO posted he was purchasing Manchester United, then said he was just joking
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 17, 2022 6:50 AM CDT
Musk Gets Manchester Fans Riled Up With Surprise Tweet
Elon Musk speaks at Tesla's design studio in Hawthorne, Calif., on March 14, 2019.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

A tweet this week from Elon Musk in which he suggested he would soon be the owner of a top UK soccer team went over about as well as it did for Ted Lasso when he first showed up to coach Apple TV's fictional team. The Tesla and SpaceX CEO was opining online Tuesday evening about his political views when he suddenly posted a surprising non sequitur: "Also, I'm buying Manchester United ur welcome." Per Reuters, Manchester fans take the idea of someone scooping up their beloved football club seriously—the team, owned by the US' Glazer family, is currently struggling, and it's already seen eight coaches over the last decade.

Some have encouraged Musk to buy the team, hoping that a big name reinvesting in it could bring it back to its former glory days. The Glazers haven't been fan favorites since they bought the team in 2005, and "clamor from fans and pundits for a change of ownership ... has been intensifying," notes Reuters. But others on Tuesday dismissed or ridiculed Musk for the thought, including by pointing out the erratic purchase process he's been undergoing to claim ownership of Twitter. The news agency also points out that it's sometimes hard to tell when Musk is joking online about possible acquisitions—a habit that's gotten Musk in trouble with regulators before.

And indeed, despite his tweet earning more than 600,000 likes by Wednesday morning, it seems that he was just joking after all. "Are you serious?" one commenter finally asked in response to Musk's tweet. "No, this is a long-running joke on Twitter," Musk responded. "I'm not buying any sports teams." He added, "Although, if it were any team, it would be Man U. They were my fav team as a kid." The Guardian notes that, had Musk been serious, he would've had to have ponied up at least $2.4 billion, based on the team's current valuation. (Read more Elon Musk stories.)

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