So here we are linked with another investor. This time it’s someone called Kenny Huang who is Chinese and has made a lot of money!
However football is the most important thing so this should not overshadow the news that Fernando Torres, after months of speculation, has finally confirmed, (via the medium of speech and not report or rumour!) that he will stay with us.
“I know that one trophy here at Liverpool means more than three or four with another club. This was my target from the day I came and it’s still my target. My commitment and loyalty to the club and to the fans is the same as it was on my first day when I signed….. I felt at home from the first day. I feel the fans love me and everyone knows I am really happy here and really happy to play at Anfield. I’m looking forward to starting the season”
I don’t think there is anything else to say that hasn’t already been discussed by this blog regarding Torres’ future except, great! Perhaps however one should also mention the role of HRH in this who Torres thanked for making the effort to come and talk to him and explain his plans for the club. With two of the “crown jewels” retained HRH can now concentrate on resolving the Mascherano situation one way or another? If it’s the way the majority of fans feel it will go then hopefully soon so we have some funds to spend before the transfer window closes?
The retention of Torres will certainly make the club a more attractive proposition to anyone wishing to buy. Which brings us to the latest takeover bid. A new investor, one of five or six in the frame we are lead to believe? Whatever the number the situation remains the same. We need financial stability, a new stadium, investment in the team and, it goes without saying, the Star Spangled Duo out. Not much to ask is it!
If there are many potential buyers they will have their own way of trying to convince the powers that be of their suitability to take on this task. Kenny Huang and his team have chosen to go public perhaps to force the issue, their bid is far short of Statler and Waldorf’s valuation, or maybe for other PR reasons which I don’t care to go into as they detract from the main issues outlined above. I just hope that we don’t make the same mistakes that we did with Hicks and Gillett. I don’t know anything about Martin Broughton or Barclays Capital but I know they are more competent and experienced at this sort of thing than those who conducted the due “diligence” on Hicks and Gillett when they came to us peddling their own unique, but destructive, brand of spin.
Of the other alleged bids speculation is that Rhone (who were in for 25% of the cake earlier this year) and Kuwait’s billionaire Al Kharafi family are in the mix and that some are simply in there at the behest of Statler and Waldorf to create competition and force the price up? This would not surprise me (totally in character) however, one can’t help thinking that this is the last desperate act by a desperate duo. They have until October before RBS reassesses their £250m loan. Part of me hopes the sale is completed this summer so we can perhaps get some players in. This Friday has been mentioned but I’m tremendously sceptical, surely these sort of things take longer to thrash out? However, the other half of me also hopes that it drags on and gets nearer to October which might make the Star Spangled Duo start to sweat and have their chances or walking away with a healthy and undeserved profit if not scuppered then at least severely dented?
I’m sure I‘ve written this before but here goes again. Above all I hope it’s made clear what the terms of the takeover are so that everyone is under no illusion as to what’s involved – no bringing in unpopular financial arrangements or agreements via the back door this time please. I’m realistic, no one will take over Liverpool without eventually trying to make some profit for themselves however I hope they balance this with a regard for the traditions of the club whilst trying to take it forward. In order to achieve that they to demonstrate a clear understanding of what Liverpool FC is about, the passion and pride of the fans, it’s place in football. This is something that our American “friends” were totally naive about and continually failed to grasp, even after a few years at the club. That, economic crisis or not, was a major factor in their calamitous fall from grace. Let’s hope that this time mistakes are learned from, by all parties?
Finally it was sad to hear that ex red player and reserves boss Gary Ablett has non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (blood cancer). My best wishes go to him and his family in what must be a very worrying time. Get well soon Gary.