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Once Bitten, Twice Shy?

Liverpool FC are currently trying to replace their American ice hockey franchise owners with American baseball franchise owners instead.

“Everyone knows it’ll be a good thing for the club,” said Carragher today. “Hopefully it will be sorted sooner rather than later and we can start looking forward on the pitch and start improving results, which is what we need to do.”

Once bitten, twice shy? Course not. With all the excitement surrounding potentially ousting Hicks and Gillett from the club, it appears as though Mr Liverpool is speaking on behalf of Merseyside when blindly walking in to this situation.

Let’s rewind three years shall we, when it was announced that Hicks and Gillett had bought the club…

Liverpool chairman David Moores, who become an honorary life president, said: “This is a great step forward for Liverpool’s shareholders and its fans. This club is my passion and forms a huge part of my life. After much careful consideration, I have agreed to sell my shares to assist in securing the investment needed for the new stadium and for the playing squad. I urge all my fellow shareholders to do the same and to support the offer. By doing so, I believe you will be backing the successful future of Liverpool. I am also delighted to accept the offer from the Hicks and Gillett families to continue my involvement in the club by becoming honorary life president.”

Rick Parry, chief executive at the time: : “This is great for Liverpool, our supporters and the shareholders – it is the beginning of a new era for the club. They are bringing to the table tremendous and relevant experience, a passion for sport, real resources and a strong commitment to the traditions of Liverpool. We know that George and Tom want a long-term relationship with Liverpool and that they also understand the importance of investing in our success both on and off the field. They have made clear their intention to move as quickly as practicable on the financing and construction of our proposed new stadium at Stanley Park and also to support investment in the playing squad.”

Mark Lawrenson: “I think the future is bright for Liverpool. They’re about to go to a brand new ground with 60,000 fans, I think there’s investment and arguably better use of the brand name – and they are a worldwide brand. This will help the manager Rafael Benitez buy even better players and help keep them up with Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea and the teams in the Champions League – if not overtake them.”

Liverpool fans’ reaction: “This is a much better deal than the DIC deal. Liverpool have made a wise choice. It is a shame that clubs have to sell out to investors, but the big clubs have to move with the times.”

“This is surely the news every Liverpool supporter wants to hear and it looks like finally, Liverpool FC may be starting the journey back to the top of English football.”

“I’ve just listened to George Gillett and Tom Hicks at the press conference, and I clearly believe that these are the men to take Liverpool forward!”

“I have warmed to the Americans and am confident Parry and Moores know what they’re doing, so I trust their decision.”

So, it’s good to know after the hopes were so high last, only for fans to carry out weekly protests now their club are now in the relegation zone, that they are learning from their mistakes, eh Mr Liverpool?

What to the new prospective owners, NESV, have to say?

“NESV wants to create a long-term financially solid foundation for Liverpool FC and is dedicated to ensuring that the club has the resources to build for the future. Our objective is to stabilise the club and ultimately return Liverpool FC to its rightful place in English and European football, successfully competing for and winning trophies. NESV wants to help bring back the culture of winning to Liverpool FC.”

And what did Hicks and Gillett say when they bought the club in 2007?

“Liverpool is a fantastic club with a remarkable history and a passionate fanbase. We fully acknowledge and appreciate the unique heritage and rich history of Liverpool and intend to respect this heritage in the future. The Hicks family and the Gillett family are extremely excited about continuing the club’s legacy and tradition. We are particularly pleased that David Moores and Rick Parry will have a continuing involvement in the club. For us continuity and stability are keys to the future.”

It’s the same old waffle. This is a great club… bla bla bla… we will give you money… bla bla bla… we will bring success back to you… bla bla bla.

Regardless, Carragher, who plays for a club whose fans are buying “Yanks out” scarves and showing up with “Yanks out” banners, is now throwing his weight behind a new Yank bid, by new Yanks making all the promises the old Yanks did. Well played.

So, what has this got to do with us? Like Liverpool, we’re fighting against our owners, but unlike Liverpool, we don’t welcome our Yanks with open arms. Theirs is a situation they welcomed whilst ours was a situation we protested against for years before it finally happened. Whilst Liverpool have won nothing under their new owners, now dwelling in the relegation zone, United, under the leadership of Sir Alex Ferguson, have won three league titles, the European Cup and three League Cups. We have managed this in spite of our ownership, rather than having success because of our ownership, like Chelsea, to use an obvious example.

The Red Knights have been the only serious potential buyers in the five years and that was met with a mixed reaction. Whilst MUST gave their full backing to the cause, there were plenty of reds who were far more cautious, wanting to know a lot more about the Red Knights before offering their support. Other reds on principle wanted nothing to do these money men from London. But at present, we’re waiting for the valuation of the club to fall before the Glazers will sell. Given that Forbes have just named us as the most valuable franchise in the world, ahead of the Dallas Cowboys, Real Madrid and New York Yankees, our protests must continue long and hard. In contrast, Liverpool don’t have the fanbase, assets or general value that United has, with a measly £300m enough to save them from Yank ownership. Well, one set of Yank ownership anyway.

Any new owner of either of our clubs will desperately seek the fans’ backing, something the Glazers never had from United. In contrast, it looks as though NESV already has the support of Liverpool, if we are to take Jamie Carragher as a good representative, just like Hicks and Gillett had their support three years ago. Out of the frying pan…

Reclaim our club
Dig out your old shirts

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. says:

    @CedarsDevil – the food alone puts the rest of the world to shame:)

    Agree with you, Beirut is always stereotyped as a dangerous city ever since the civil war. But it is far from that!

  2. suhayl says:

    cedars…..iraq being wartorn…afghanistan being war torn…beirut when it was bombed and war torn..that was the analogy. Areas that were shelled and what its was like.

    Should have foot noted, that it wasn’t a generalisation. I am aware how beautiful in parts the middle east is….been there many times myself.

    Sorry if any offence caused..

  3. CedarsDevil says:


    Cheers mate, I am sitting in a coffee shop at the moment in down town Beirut enjoying a cold beer, the sexiest women walking by and a wind breeze to die for! ….. actually if Rooney was born here than he would be oozing with class and sophistication!

  4. CedarsDevil says:

    @ suhayl

    No offence taken whatsoever mate, just wanted to differentiate between those you mentioned and Beirut. Ask anyone yo may know you has been here and you will know what I mean….


  5. FletchTHEMAN says:

    Top posts about the debt and the stability that we have at United. It is very important to understand that even the Sheiks and the Abramoviches of this world may love football or not, may be home grown fans or not, may have 250M or 2B. It does not mater. ALL INVESTMENT IN CLUBS ARE IN THE FORM OF LOANS or purchased shares. Some of these loans/shares are made on personal wealth (aka the Sheik and Roman) others require corporate leverage (aka the Glazers). If Chelsea wish to by a player, the 40M that comes from Abrmovich is a Loan to the club. At the end of the day, ALL of these investors want a return, which may be few million per year to fund a yacht, or it might be windfall profit at the point of sale. Make no mistake, the Sheiks contributions to city are written in a ledger and are formally loans that require repayment. Henrys “purchase” of Liverpool will not “eliminate” the debt. It will only transfer it to his company, which will then hold the paper and will recover an expected return.
    In summary, owners and investors have always been in it, at some level, for profit.

  6. FletchTHEMAN says:

    On the idea of Ole leaving. Looks like he is in talks with Molde, his former team in the Norwegian top division. Molde tried to bring him in as manager previously, but Ole wanted to gain more experience at United and agreed to managing the Reserves where he has been very successful. Feel it is a logical step for him to try club football or his national team. We may love him to bits, but he just needs to get some more experience. We will always wish him well.

  7. suhayl says:

    Cedars…i know exactly the women you are talking about…..they are the latinas of the middle east…lebanon, syria, the emirates, egypt, iraq iran,….many of the gulf states have amazingly beautiful women…amazing.

    What i did find in years gone by, was that unless you are of middle eastern descent or arabs…youve got more chance of winning the lottery consisting of predicting 20 million numbers in sequence.

    Hope your lucks in, being a native

  8. CedarsDevil says:

    @ suhayl

    Call me naive but I have read your second paragraph over and over again and I still do not get it!!!

    Do explain

  9. willierednut says:

    Lost in translation?

  10. CedarsDevil says:

    @ willie

    I guess so! LOL

  11. suhayl says:

    Cedars. Foreign guys do not stand a chance with lebanese, arabian etc women. Most arab women i know or have seen always go for arab guys.

    My observations anyway..

    Right check your reply in a few days…..darts it is

  12. FletchTHEMAN says:

    @willierednut, While suhayl and CedarsD chat up the assets of middle eastern ladies. Could I ask you for your views on Kikos form and obvious commitment to the club in the face of some strong interest>

  13. CedarsDevil says:

    @ suhayl

    I am impressed, have you actually visited Iraq, Iran Egypt, the UAE, Syria and Lebanon?

    Hats off to you

  14. suhayl says:

    I am a muslim…obligation to visit those countries….but no…not been to lebanon…but have been to saudi, uae, egypt and oman..turkey…..did also go with a convoy to gaza, but the obvious problems as you would know.

    Just my observations there and in the uk.

    Fletch…sorry mate….easy to digress with totty on the mind.

  15. CedarsDevil says:

    @ suhayl

    No worries my friend, regardless of your race or religion I respect you…. Just glad that our engagement never went over board…

    The fact the you are a UNITED fan makes you a friend….

  16. willierednut says:

    FletchTHEMAN – Really hard to judge his form, he’s hardly played any games. On the interest from other clubs, I’d say a loan move would do him good, if he’s not gonna get a proper run in the team, we’re blessed with a lot of good strikers atm.

  17. King Eric says:

    Suhayl – Alright pal, how are you? Missed those fucking dipper rants mate. Top stuff.

  18. theboogeyman says:

    suhayl- Nice rant mate.

  19. willierednut says:

    Redknapp on sky sports with his dick hanging out lmao.

  20. rooney the new king says:

    willierednut – well 3 strikers on form non of them rooney. I wonder how much money would anyone put on that 3 strikers playing well that non of the 3 would be rooney.

  21. willierednut says:

    Forms temporary, class is permanent.

  22. says:

    9 more days until United play again.

    until then i will subject myself to Rio Ferdinand’s hourly twitter updates….

  23. MG says:

    9 more days of boredom

    9 more days of endless newspaper rubbish

    9 more days of United news being no news at all

    9 more days of United being finished

    9 more days of negativity

    9 more days to sort ourselves out : )

  24. Xyth says:

    The Guardian: Glazer debt drains Manchester United’s £100m record profits
    • Club still post net loss due to huge Glazer interest repayments

    Next home match everybody should bring their their Gold and Green scarves.

    We want Glazers out, we want Glazers out!!!!!!!!!!!
    Enough is enough!!!

  25. Corea says:

    Interesting.. Berba hasn’t scored in a couple of games he is still a player in form.. ouch..
    This is what hat-tricks against some opposition can do to you.
    As for Macheda’s comments they will sort it out. But i have to disagree a bit with awesome suhayl. maybe not the best moment. but he is still 19 ?

  26. Red Devil says:


    Really missed those dipper -bashing rants mate….. :D :D keep em coming…

    Redknapp on skysports with his dick hanging out….hahahahaha…OMG!! hhahahahaha

  27. Dakota says:

    Slow day at the office eh Scott ?? :D

  28. arijc says:

    Ole’s not leaving for Molde. He will stay as long as Fergie is at the club.

  29. MG says:

    Slow day again

    Apart from:

    Apparently we are more than ever richer before generating more money…

    Fantastic – yipeeeeeeeeeee! – time to celebrate


    What about that four letter swear word called debt…

  30. Wakey says:

    @denton davey

    The club was bought for 790mill. The Glazers put in £230mill of that with £175mill being the money they got from the PIK loan. That left the in itial debt secured against the club at 560mill. The restructure in 2006 was mainly to get more favorable rates but was said to have reduced the amount owed by upto 30mill. The bond issue reduced it down to 504mill.

    So even if you look at the debt including the PIK’s it was £745mill (560mill + 175mill) and its now £634mill (£504mill + 130mill – Technically the 40mill in PIKs the Glazers now own are still owed as the Glazers are still using them on their accounts to take advantage of accounting/tax loopholes)

  31. Wakey says:


    When it comes to buying players its not even often loans from the owner. Its effectively using a bank overdraft that the banks happy to give as the banks feel the owner can guarantee it. While Roman did give money to buy some players others were paid for with money that wasn’t in the clubs account and with City most of their transfers have come on credit.


    As I have said multiple times on here the account details we see aren’t United but the parent companies. The parent company is setup to run at a loss to PROTECT the cash in the club from the Tax man. Infact most of what loss are non-cash accounting deductions such as depreciation and goodwill.

    At the end of the day the parent company posting a loss effectivly makes the club money as it saves tens of millions a year that would be paid to the taxman

  32. Red Devil says:

    @ Wakey

    You ignore the small matter of the rolled up amount of interest while taking PIK debt as 130 million in your above post to denton davey. if the interest isn’t being paid now, it is getting compounded and has been adding to the debt burden all this while over the last 3-4 years…

  33. denton davey says:

    Wakey @ 12:14 – according to the figures you present in this message, the debt has gone down ? Or am I missing something ??


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