Prospective bidders vying to acquire Manchester United are under pressure to submit second, revised bids for the football club as the takeover saga heats up. The deadline for submissions is set at 9 pm GMT on Wednesday, leaving little room for negotiation or delay.

Raine, the investment bank conducting the sale, has not disclosed the level of strictness it intends to enforce on the cut-off time, or whether any other parties will enter the fray.

The outcome of the bidding process could see Raine declare a preferred bidder in the near future, which would then be granted exclusive rights to conduct a thorough due diligence process.

The only two publicly-declared bidders, Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim and Ineos owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe, have had just a few days to mull over the data and information they gathered during their visits to Old Trafford and the club’s Carrington training complex last week.

Despite both parties having held positive meetings with United officials, their initial offers are understood to fall short of the club’s American owners, the Glazers’, valuation of between £5-6bn. Nevertheless, the bidders are expected to submit improved, more detailed bids, although the exact amount they have so far offered remains undisclosed.