Elon Musk says he was 'joking' about buying Manchester United from the Glazers

Musk's tweet was immediately deluged with replies from fans - REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Musk's tweet was immediately deluged with replies from fans - REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

Elon Musk has said his suggestion that he wants to buy Manchester United was a "joke".

Some fans had urged the billionaire tech entrepreneur to buy Manchester United after a 4-0 humiliation at Brentford on Saturday left them bottom of the Premier League after two games.

It has been the club's worst start to a season in more than 100 years.

The Tesla founder said on Tuesday: "I'm buying Manchester United ur welcome (sic)." - a comment that quickly set the football world abuzz. The original post received almost 40,000 retweets and over 200,000 likes within a couple of hours.

One asked him to immediately jettison defender Harry Maguire. "Please send Maguire to Mars," the fan wrote.

But he later clarified that he was joking.

In his reply to a comment on the Tweet, he wrote: "No, this is a long-running joke on Twitter. 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.

"And I’m not buying Coca-Cola to put the cocaine back in, despite the extreme popularity of such a move."

In the same original post about Manchester United he joked about his own political positions, having recently voted for a Republican candidate for the first time.

He wrote: "To be clear, I support the left half of the Republican Party and the right half of the Democratic Party!"

Musk said in May that he had voted for Democrats in the past but that his future votes would be for Republicans.

He frequently comments on politics, saying earlier this summer that he was leaning towards supporting Florida's Republican Governor Ron DeSantis for president in 2024 and that Donald Trump was too old to serve as president again.

The world's richest man has a history of using Twitter to make bold statements - some of which he later dismisses as jokes.

Musk is currently trying to terminate a $44 billion deal to buy Twitter which he has backed out of.

Last week it was revealed that he had sold nearly seven billion US dollars (£5.8 billion) of shares in Tesla ahead of a legal battle, which is scheduled for October.