Liverpool takeover looking closer than ever
Liverpool appear to be the closest they have been to a takeover since Tom Hicks and George Gillett first put the club up for sale back in April.
Kenneth Huang, a major Wall Street stockbroker and chairman of the QSL Sports Group, is fronting a Chinese consortium reported to be negotiating with the Royal Bank of Scotland, who are currently owed £237 million by the Anfield club.
Despite an RBS spokesman denying talks have taken place, Huang is said to be backed by “serious money” and has already spoken with high-ranking Anfield officials to emphasise his determination to oust Hicks and Gillett from their position once and for all.
But the deal proposed by Huang is far from favourable for the American duo, with the consortium’s plan to buy the club’s debt and force the two owners out leaving them with no profit -a million miles away from the four-fold return Gillett stated he could make when the club first went up for sale.
In order to try and scupper any potential deal between RBS and Huang, co-owner Gillett has reopened negotiations with ex-Syrian footballer Yahya Kirdi, who is believed to be fronting another consortium interested in taking over at Anfield.
RBS have given the American tycoon the chance to come to a deal with the Syrian, though the bank are believed to be losing patience with the two business men and will offer them little time to negotiate other deals before accepting an offer from Huang’s consortium.
Sources inside Anfield have dismissed Kirdi’s bid, suggesting that the businessman is unlikely to make an offer, opening the door for Huang and the substantial financial power that is backing him in the negotiations with RBS.
RBS have the power to take control of the sale of the club should they believe it to be the best way to ensure the repayment of loans and the quickest possible sale of the Anfield outfit.
However the bank are obligated to listen to any offers presented by the clubs current owners, allowing Gillett to stall any potential deal with Huang by presenting Kirdi as a serious potential bidder.
But should RBS perceive Kirdi to be an unlikely candidate to make a bid for the club, Hicks and Gillett may be run out of options in their attempts to stop the Huang deal going through, allowing the Chinese consortium to strike a deal with the bank in order to end the duo’s spell in control of the Anfield club.
Though far from having a done deal, Huang and the consortium he is fronting are the closest bidders to ending Hicks and Gillett’s reign since the pair took over at Anfield over three years ago.
Should Gillett’s negotiations prove to be fruitless, the two current owners may make way for the start of a new era on Merseyside.