So another take over rumour.
It’s about time we had one as it’s only been oh a few weeks since the last one. Recently we’ve had an Indian businessman an assorted collection of oil rich, middle east glitterati and now some more Americans in the form of something called Rhone.
So far none of these have produced anything concrete but perhaps the Rhone rumour might have more mileage? Hicks and Gillett need £100m and fast – The Royal Bank of Scotland say they must reduce the club debt of £237m by this amount this summer. As befitting their behaviour since they joined us, they aren’t about the raid their own coffers so surely the first place they will look is their home market purely on the grounds that they are familiar with it?
One hopes that those who are checking the credentials of Rhone will ensure that they don’t try and take a page out of Hicks and Gillett’s book by landing us in more debt. It would also be interesting to see if there has been any connection with Hicks, Gillett and Rhone in the past – the old boy network?
It’s been suggested that the Rhone involvement will reduce the club’s debt by half. Great so we are half way to getting out of the s*** the original cowboys put us in! If it does happen it’s been suggested that, as a consequence, Hicks and Gillett’s shareholding will be reduced to 30% each, a potential problem when making boardroom decisions? We shall see.
One thing I’m pretty certain about is that this is not the outcome many fans wanted. I suspect the majority would rather see Hicks and Gillett leave the club completely! Perhaps we may yet achieve this if Rhone’s involvement reduces the debt, increases creditworthiness and makes us a more attractive investment opportunity to others? However I doubt it. Statler and Waldorf won’t go unless they leave with a handsome profit and they know that if they ride out this rocky period and see the stadium built, there will be more commercial opportunities to exploit and therefore more riches to enjoy?
And Rhone? What is annoying to me and I suspect many others is that so far comments have been confined to the debt. There has been no indication on what Rhone’s involvement means for the new stadium, new players and of course Rafa or do we just take it as read? It’s almost as if the overall interests of the club are second to Hicks’ and Gillett’s short term cash flow problem, and Rhone’s involvement.
Perhaps this says more about where Rhone’s priorities lie? For example they do not have demonstrable history of involvement in football, or any sport? Will they have the clubs interests, in the long term, at heart or are they in it for a “quick buck”? I seriously doubt the former. They are a company that invests in potential business opportunities for short term profit. They are businessmen so would hardly invest in Liverpool unless they expecting some sort of return? I suspect they will, as soon as the balance sheet or business opportunity presents itself, jump ship with a profit giving scant regard for the long term interests of the club.
Perhaps I’ll be proved wrong and Rhone might demonstrate a hitherto unseen philanthropic side to their make up. However, on the face of they seem to be no better than the current star spangled incumbents? Worse still could it be that Hicks and Gillett’s perceived solution to their problems might see the club getting into even deeper trouble?