Liverpool owner Henry denies club is for sale
LIVERPOOL - Liverpool owner John Henry has denied the English giants are up for sale despite seeking fresh investment in the club.
Henry’s Fenway Sports Group (FSG) said in November it would “consider new shareholders if it was in the best interests of Liverpool as a club.”
That sparked speculation that the 19-time English champions were on the market alongside rivals Manchester United.
“I know there has been a lot of conversation and quotes about LFC (Liverpool Football Club), but I keep to the facts,” Henry told the Boston Sports Journal in an interview published online Monday.
“We merely formalised an ongoing process. Will we be in England forever? No. Are we selling LFC? No. Are we talking with investors about LFC? Yes.
“Will something happen there? I believe so, but it won’t be a sale. Have we sold anything in the past 20-plus years?“
FSG – who also own baseball giants the Boston Red Sox – paid £300 million (S$482.28 million) for Liverpool 13 years ago, after fellow Americans Tom Hicks and George Gillett left the club on the brink of administration.
Under their ownership, Liverpool have been restored to the top of the English and European game – winning the 2019 Champions League and lifting the club’s first Premier League crown for 30 years in 2020.
Forbes now values Liverpool at around US$4.45 billion.
However, FSG have been criticised by fans for a lack of investment in new players this season.
Liverpool sit eighth in the Premier League, 19 points adrift of leaders Arsenal, and are already out of both domestic cup competitions.
Despite that slump in form, manager Jurgen Klopp has publicly backed the club’s owners.
“We are here in a good position. I know that sounds strange because we didn’t play our best football but in general we are in good hands,” said Klopp last month.
“So we don’t get crazy or whatever. We really know about the responsibility we have and we really try absolutely everything to try to bring us back on track and not worry too much.”
Manchester United are expected to fetch a world record price for a football club should a sale of the Red Devils be completed in the coming months.
British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe and Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim Bin Hamad Al Thani have publicly revealed their interest in United with bids expected to reach around $6 billion.
Chelsea currently hold the record sale for a football club after a consortium led by LA Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly and private equity group Clearlake Capital won a bidding war by paying £2.5 billion for the Blues in May. - AFP
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