A second Qatari bid to buy Manchester United has been submitted, according to widespread reports.
Sheikh Jassim was expected to lodge an improved second-round offer, and so it proved overnight into Saturday.
No figures have been confirmed but improved bids are expected to be worth north of £5billion.
The Qatari bid is reportedly the strongest, headed by the chairman of Qatar Islamic Bank and the son of a former Qatari prime minister.
Rivals bids are also in Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Finnish businessman Thomas Zilliacus.
On Thursday, a spokesperson for Ineos confirmed that Ratcliffe had made a new bid for the 20-time English champions, having also seen his initial offer, thought to be around £4.5bn, turned down.
Sheikh Jassim is regarded as the favourite to buy the club, although various reports in recent days have claimed that the Glazers are considering pulling the plug on a sale.
The Qatari banker recently sent a team to Manchester to meet with senior club officials, and to explore Old Trafford and the Carrington training complex, before Ratcliffe made the trip one day later.
US hedge fund Elliott Management allegedly made a bid to purchase a minority stake of the club before the initial deadline of last Wednesday at 9pm.
Finnish entrepreneur Thomas Zilliacus is also in the running to buy the club, with the 69-year-old revealing in a statement that he has made a new offer, having failed to convince either Sheikh Jassim or Ratcliffe to enter into a possible partnership with him.
“I have appealed to my two main rivals, Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Sheikh Jassim, to join forces with me so that we buy the club
together and that way channel more money to the club for everything from player acquisition to stadium upgrades.”
“I however have not received any reply, so XXI Century Capital has increased its bid.
We believe our offer, which includes fans involvement in never before seen ways as well as values that the future of the club will be built on, is the best for the club and its fans.
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“We continue to receive strong support from the fans, who say they want to see our bid win.
I continue to hope that we could work together with Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Sheik Jassim to improve the club, but as we have received no replies XXI Century Capital sees no other option than to increase its own bid.
“We are dead serious in our wish to buy the club.
We will make it the world’s best club and we will significantly grow the already massive fan base around the world by offering fans everywhere unprecedented ways to be involved and to communicate with the club and the players.”
Zilliacus is the ex-chairman of Finnish football club HJK Helsinki, while he is the former owner of ice hockey team Helsingin Jokerit.
The Glazer family will now work together with Raine Group – the US bank handling the sale – to decide the next steps in the takeover process.