Spent the entire morning trawling thru various LFC blogs & British newspaper reports. Sigh . . . all of em make fer fooking depressing reading. Its all fooked up, thanks to the wonderful intervention of a couple of suvvern cowboys.
Hope those bigoted Liverpool fans who initially shuddered at the thought of handing control over to DIC & were too quick to embrace the American dream (& all its attendant fooking bullshit) learn a valuable lesson here.
Fer those who haven't had the time to read about the chaos engulfing the Anfield house of cards, read the article below. You won't be smiling if you are a Kopite. It's all fooked me friends, all fooked . . .
Liverpool's US dream turns to nightmare
by Andy HunterTuesday January 15, 2008 from the UK's broadsheet The Guardian
Tom Hicks and George Gillett provided plenty of ammunition to sceptics of the American takeover of Anfield last February (of which there were precious few) with talk of franchises, Liverpool Reds and goal-tenders but it was their considered and frequent description of themselves as mere "custodians" of a £218.9m investment that resonated loudest with the club's support, even as the institution that is England's most successful club was heading for foreign ownership.
Appeasement and ambition were their overriding objectives as they were introduced in the Anfield trophy room by the chief executive, Rick Parry, who, with the departing chairman and then majority shareholder, David Moores, had helped clear the path by vouching for the credentials of men who promised openness and to "earn the respect of the fans".
Given that Hicks and Gillett had to purchase compulsorily only 1.4% of the club's shares over the next 21 days, the message was evidently taken on trust. How different the picture looks 11 months on.
It says everything about the Liverpool co-chairmen's standing among that same support today that Tom Hicks' revelation that he spoke to Jürgen Klinsmann about replacing the popular Rafael Benítez was not the only bad news to emanate from Texas. As far as the vast majority are concerned, Hicks' insistence that neither he nor his business partner is interested in selling Liverpool to Dubai International Capital is a further, demoralising blow.
"The speculation in the London tabloids on Sunday morning is more rubbish," said Hicks in an extraordinary interview with the Liverpool Echo yesterday, attempting to perpetuate the myth that it is a southern media conspiracy that is destabilising the club. "George and I have no interest in meeting with DIC or selling our shares to them. We are amazed at how silly rumours find themselves in print in the tabloids." This from a man who claimed he approached Klinsmann only on the basis of press rumours about Benítez's discontent, and who staged the meeting in the same week the Spaniard brought their rift over transfer policy into the public domain.
Whether honesty, fear that the meeting with the next Bayern Munich coach would be made public or a considered effort to push Benítez closer to the exit fuelled Hicks' admission is unclear but the Kop's anger and discontent are not.
A concerted effort was made by the organisers of the pro-Benítez march last November to avoid anti-US sentiment and to concentrate on support for the man who has delivered two Champions League final appearances in his three full seasons at the club. Yet that feeling is growing as Liverpool's absentee owners act with continued disregard for the traditions and heritage they vowed to protect.
Save for a carefully scripted statement issued after they met Benítez following the defeat by Manchester United on December 16, Gillett has maintained a public silence on the manager's future. His presence at Hicks' retreat in southern California for the meeting with Klinsmann, however, indicates it is not just the more vociferous Texan who harbours doubts over the Spaniard's title-winning credentials. And what might they have heard from the former Germany national team coach last November that prevented an agreement with their "insurance policy"?
That Liverpool require time and more signings of the calibre and expense of Fernando Torres to sustain a genuine challenge for the Premier League? If so, Klinsmann's advice would have been identical to what they have heard consistently from Benítez.
Hicks and Gillett are not close to selling Liverpool to DIC, as weekend reports suggested. Should they succeed in securing a £350m loan to refinance their takeover and fund the first stages of the proposed stadium on Stanley Park before the end of February, then the pressure to seek outside help for their ambitious project also diminishes. Such is the rising anger at their reign, however, the pressure to sell could eventually come from Liverpool supporters and not the Royal Bank of Scotland, which funded the takeover.
Despite Hicks' dismissal of the DIC stories, the Americans did hold talks with the Dubai company about acquiring a 15% stake last October. The deal was close to completion until Liverpool's owners valued the club at £1bn - accounting for a completed stadium - and DIC refused to pay £150m for 15% of an investment they hoped to buy outright only eight months previously. DIC's interest remains.
Tonight's FA Cup replay with Luton should be about the League One club's desperate plight and Jamie Carragher's 500th appearance for Liverpool. The distractions will linger until either the Spaniard or the Americans walk on.
ps: How's that fer sobering reading? As usual, comments from genuine footie fans (& not mud-slinging wankers) are welcomed.