Cousin of Man City owner fails with £2 billion takeover of Premier League rivals
What’s the story?
According to a story published by DailyMail, Sheik Khaled Bin Zayed Al Nehayan, the cousin of Manchester City owner Sheik Mansour, failed with a record £2 billion proposal to takeover Liverpool.
Liverpool are owned by American sports investment company Fenway Sports Group who also own Boston Red Sox. The Reds were in a financial crunch when FSG took over and under the American owners, Liverpool have turned things around and are now debt free and also the eighth richest club in the world.
The heart of the matter
Sheik Khaled Bin Zayed Al Nehayan, an Emirati member of the family who governs Abu Dhabi, approached the owners of Liverpool in late 2017 and early 2018 to discuss what would have been the most expensive takeover in the history of football.
The report also says that Midhat Kidwai, the managing director of Sheik Khaled's conglomerate of companies, met with Tom Werner, the chairman of Liverpool in New York.
The potential buyout would have been a joint venture between Sheik Khaled and a minority stake Chinese partner.
Although the Kidwai met with Werner, the agreement didn’t reach a stage where Liverpool’s major shareholders had to meet with the Abu Dhabi investors.
Liverpool’s owners have been clear in their stance that the club is not for sale. A Liverpool club spokesperson said:
“FSG have been clear and consistent in their stance that the club is not for sale. What the ownership have said – again clearly and consistently – is that ‘under the right terms and conditions we would consider taking on a minority investor, if such a partnership was to further our commercial interests in specific marketplaces and in line with the continued development and growth of the club and the team.’”
In August 2016, the club also dismissed rumours that a Chinese investment company was keen on taking over the club for over £1 billion.
It is clear that Liverpool is not for sale, but they are open to minority investors. FSG have invested heavily into the Liverpool first team this summer and will be hoping to see Jurgen Klopp win the club’s first silverware since 2012.
If the Reds can achieve success under Klopp, then any potential takeover in the future will cost significantly more.