John W Henry, the principal owner of New England Sports Ventures (NESV) and the Boston Red Sox baseball team is now also the proud owner of Liverpool Football Club.
As expected the news early this morning was that the temporary restraining order obtained from the Texas court by Tom Hicks and George Gillett, preventing Liverpool FC from completing a sale of the club to NESV, would be lifted when the court re-opened in to ensure compliance with the High Court in the UK. This process when complete would allow New England Sports Ventures (NESV) to be able to complete the takeover process and satisfy the RBS debt on the club in what Tom Hicks has since referred to as an “epic swindle” by people that he trusted and believed to be loyal.
Despite reports of Mill Financial approaching the Premier League to complete the “Director & Owners” test, an effort that was rejected as the Premier League would only enter dialogue with, and take direction from Liverpool Football Club on such a matter, at just after 420pm, it was confirmed by Martin Broughton that John W Henry and his NESV team were the new owners of the club. The saga likened to a penalty shootout by the Liverpool chairman as he stated ”As long as you get the right result, it’s worth the wait. We’ve got the right result.”
As Martin Broughton introduced John Henry to the cameras, the Red Sox owner gave his commitment to listening to those around him as they settled in at the club as well as being happy to guarantee that the purchase of the club was not a LBO “leveraged buy out”, three words that should make any football fan shudder with caution. As Liverpool fans welcome NESV into the fold, albeit with an element of caution and rightly so, hope deeper in the soul will be for sight of the same winning mentality and development that has seen Red Sox fans proud of the leadership that they are under.
Christian Purslow expanded on just how convinced he was that Liverpool FC was now under the right control;
“We’ve sorted out our financial issues once and for all and we can now get back to football,” he said.
“It was incredibly civilised and it’s just a pleasure to work with people like Martin Broughton
. We have the best lawyers in London…it was tranquillity.”
“The most important thing is that NESV have cleared us of all the debts which, frankly, shouldn’t have been on the club in the first place.”
“They’ve done so in a way which leads me to believe that they will learn the lessons of the past and approach the challenge of owning Liverpool Football Club in a way which I think our fans will judge over time and which I’m optimistic will prove to be a very positive improvement on what we’ve been through recently.”
Liverpool can now look forward to a period of development and re-energisation under their new ownership, free of the acquisition debt that the previous American owners had burdened the club with to almost the point of administration. Liverpool FC staff and fans alike, may now find themselves starting to sleep a little easier at night and hope that todays success is emulated on the pitch in the form of results and improved commitment. First up, the short trip across Stanley Park to the home of rivals Everton on Sunday, of which John Henry will not be making an appearance, citing his preference to make his entry at Anfield.
Liverpool fans can take great heart from their own unrelenting efforts to remove H&G from the club, which certainly has played its part over time. From the organisational efforts of the Spirit of Shankly Supporters Union, the Mike Jefferies You Tube Video through to awareness raising over social media as to the suffering of the club on all sides.
You’ll Never Walk Alone is the heartbeat of Liverpool Football Club, a unity that doesn’t know how to quit, despite the trials and tribulations that are placed in front of it, it always moves on. Hicks and Gillett failed to embrace that almost religion, they couldn’t comprehend its values or the belief in it. That ignorance and arrogance of failing to understand people as well as their financial failings has now cost them to a level they could never have comprehended when they walked in the door. The song that those take hope and heart from, will now haunt them forever and rightly so.
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