Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Gillett rejects takeover rumours

Liverpool co-owner George Gillett has again denied rumors that Saudi prince Faisal bin Fahd bin Abdullah al-Saud's 'F6' investment company was planning to make a major investment in the club. Gillett's comments follow an official statement from both owners claiming "there is no agreement with any party and reports to the contrary are wholly inaccurate." Speaking to '', Gillett said:

"We had a marvellous meeting with them on Saturday and they were impressed with the club, but the academies in Saudi Arabia and North Africa and their possible involvement in NASCAR-type racing in the Middle East were the only items on the agenda," said Gillett on Sky Sports.

He added: "We have entered into a period of exclusive discussions regarding the possibility of introducing NASCAR-type racing to the Middle East, but the memorandum of understanding does not cover anything else."

F6 director Barry Didato confirmed they are exploring commercial opportunities with Liverpool, however their discussions "does not involve the possibility of an immediate investment in Liverpool", and any possible transaction would be "several months away".

"As far as investment in Liverpool is concerned, that would be a long way off. A lot of people have jumped the gun and any possible investment would be several months away," said Didato on Sky Sports.

"The agreement signed (at the weekend) leaves the door open for it (possible future investment in Liverpool), but that was certainly not the focus of it."

Didato added that no talks have been staged between F6 and other Liverpool co-owner Tom Hicks.

"George has a partner there and has his own issues to work through," Didato added. "Mr Hicks will also have his own issues and we are not sure what he wants to do.

"Another issue is the club's debt (of around £245million). Prince Faisal will not put forward investment capital to just clean up a balance sheet. He would only want to use money to take the club forward. It would be long-term money."

"His Highness is open to anything and is open to being a minority shareholder, but he has tremendous favourability towards the brand and institution of Liverpool," noted Didato.

"His Highness would need to be invited by George and it would have to be at the right time for George. There would need to be a shared vision between all of the parties."

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