Loan repayments good news for Man Utd fans
By paying off the controversial payment-in-kind (PIK) loans the Glazer family have potentially removed a debt time bomb which was ticking away under Old Trafford.
With total debts of £720m it was these loans - accruing a staggering 16.25% of interest each year - which have become the most potent symbol of the Glazer's leveraged regime.
Secured on the club but kept at arms length by the Americans' complex ownership structure, they were first taken out in 2005 from three hedge funds to help the Glazers purchase the club and, despite a partial refinancing a year later, have been sitting there ever since racking up hefty interest which would have to be repaid along with the original sum in 2017.
Then, from out of nowhere, came the news that the Glazers would be paying them off in full next Monday.
The details emerged after JP Morgan, the investment bank which advises the Glazers on the PIK loans, made a company filing from joint chairman Joel Glazer which set out the family's plans to redeem the debt in full.
In keeping with the Glazers' opaque financing practices we do not know the identity of the lenders.
But more importantly we do not know where the Glazers have found the money to pay them off.
Club sources on Tuesday morning told me that money from the club would not be used to redeem the PIKs - even though the Glazers have the freedom to draw a dividend of £100m out of the club as part of their £526m bond which refinanced the club's majority of debts in January.
This is expected to be clarified when United publish financial results for the first quarter of the financial year.
There was speculation overnight on Monday that the Glazers may have sold some shares in the club to finance the move.
The Glazers may have released funds by selling some assets in the United States or refinanced the loans with other banks at better interest rates.
There will undoubtedly be relief among fans who have long seen the PIK loans as the biggest threat to United's future financial stability.
But they are unlikely to rest easy until they know for sure how they were paid off - something the secretive Glazers are unlikely to ever reveal.