I was going to start this blog with a discussion about the need to stop talking and concentrate on the football.
Recent stores about Rafa’s contract, possible transfers and the form of players such as Robbie Keane have coincided with a dip in our from, two league points from a possible six. You also need to add in the latest spat with Fergie. Although one always applauds any attempts to cock a snook at the self styled Godfather of the Premiership, our form and The Mancs’ rise to top of the league have diluted this and lead many to suggest that Fergie has won that one…. for now!
However, behind the scenes gossip and unrest is never far from the surface at Anfield these days as seen in yesterday’s news that the Star Spangled Duo had been in talks with the Kharafi group from Kuwaiti over a possible takeover. Clearly as soon as the story broke the Kuwaiti’s denied it. True or not this latest chapter brings into focus one thing. Hicks and Gillett, for all their stressed “commitment“ to Liverpool FC, foresee difficulties and are prepared to sell. And they have been for some time. This is not the first time they been in discussions with the Kharafi group and then of course there was DIC together with local reports of interest from Europe.
It seems that all that is preventing the Star Spangled Duo from off loading the club is not a desire to see it in safe hands, its future secured but the achievement of “the right price”. Presumably as the cold hands of the current crisis grip tighter, this figure might get lower and lower hence this latest episode?
It is not clear, and probably never will be, if Hicks and Gillett were in Liverpool for a quick buck all along or, because of the recent economic crisis, genuinely unwilling (or unable?) to finance the club and fulfill the brash, well publicised promises they made when they first walked through the doors at L4? Hicks and Gillett are not cash strapped but they are, first and foremost, businessmen. Putting it simply and crudely, I guess they sat down added up the figures and realised, it was better to jump ship while there was profit to be made even though it will not be on the scale of that forecast had they stayed the full course and seen their plans through? I guess the signs of trouble were there as seen in the six months grace they received over the financing of the £350m stadium loan?
Clearly it is too early to discuss the Kuwaitis’ and what they might bring. Although it is a day many have waiting for, it would also be premature to start writing Hicks and Gillett’s Liverpool obituary which not only needs to be viewed in terms of the delivery of financial promises but also what they bought to club in terms of stability and as people. One should also not forget the effects the stadium delay has had on associated local community developments in Anfield.
Although pencils remain unsharpened, it is clear that as stories such as yesterdays slowly unravel, long held suspicions are being realised. The future of Liverpool FC is looking less than secure in the hands of its current owners as more and more hands are revealed. The sad and ironic thing is that if this deal, or any deal, does go through our American friends, despite their “contributions” over the last two years, are likely to walk away from L4 considerably richer?