Reds deny Mascherano signing

The Sky Sports News channel have claimed this evening that Javier Mascherano has signed for Liverpool on a four-year deal. The club have sinced denied this.

The report claimed that the Mascherano deal was worth £18.6m and had been completed this evening, but a statement on the official website said that this was not true.

The announced that youngster Lee Peltier’s time at Anfield is now over, after he signed a permanent deal with League One side Yeovil Town, after spending the first half of the season on loan there.

As for Mascherano, the club said: “Meanwhile, contrary to reports elsewhere, the deal to complete Javier Mascherano’s permanent move to Liverpool has yet to be finalised.”

Mascherano’s deal is expected to go through soon, but was believed to be a five-year deal, costing £17m, a fee which included the player’s wages for the full five years. Sky’s claim that the length of the deal is a year shorter, for a higher fee, would need to be checked – the owners will be doing all they can to make this deal sound like major “support” on their part. Remember, they exaggerated the Fernando Torres fee by at least £6.5m last summer.

As well as including his wages for the length of the deal, the fee will also be payable over the full length of that contract.

Share Liverpool FC – details of how takeover attempt will work

The full details of the Share Liverpool FC proposals that – if brought to fruition – would see LFC bought out by fans are due to be revealed this evening.

On their website they claim that this is far from being just a pipe dream: “It’s no pipe dream; it’s do-able. Liverpool Football Club has millions of fans across the world. Most of them will have been worrying about what has been happening to our Club lately. And they’ll be realising that life as a Liverpool fan could get much more expensive.”

“We propose a model of ownership similar to that at Barcelona. This club is owned by their ‘members’. Over 100,000 fans have bought single ‘member’ shares, which entitle them to elect a Board who will run the club until the next election. At Barcelona it is once every four years. That way, no one can ever buy the club. Its structure makes its sale to the next sporting conglomerate that fancies a premiership football club a legal impossibility. The shares can never be sold; the club can never be sold. Let’s stop Liverpool Football Club becoming a trinket any rich man might like to wear around his neck. This club is close to the hearts of millions of people all over the world.”

A great and inspirational statement, but a big question is how much it will cost each potential member. It’s as predicted: “We estimate that a sum of £5,000 each will be enough. We need 100,000 members. 100,000 x £5,000 = £500 million. That should buy the club and go a long way towards building a new stadium.” Continue reading Share Liverpool FC – details of how takeover attempt will work

Names behind Reds fan buyout group revealed

More details of the group of Liverpool supporters looking to launch a takeover of the club using a continental-style ownership scheme have been revealed, with further details to be announced this evening at a 5pm meeting.

Reds fans are up in arms at a string of poor decisions and broken promises by the current owners which have certainly set the club back rather than move it forward, and look set to get worse season by season before there is any chance of them getting better. A £350m loan used in the main to pay for their own purchase of the club is one of the main issues for fans at the moment, the club having to find £30m every year now just to pay the interest off. And the owners, Tom Hicks and the long-lost George Gillett, plan to borrow at least another £250m.

Now a group calling itself the Share Liverpool FC Group has come with an idea where they envisage 100,000 supporters from the world over all clubbing together and buying the club out of the Hicks-Gillett mess. Continue reading Names behind Reds fan buyout group revealed

Result: West Ham 1 Liverpool 0

Barclays Premier League – January 30th 2008 – Result

West Ham 1 Liverpool 0

West Ham: 1 Green, 2 Neill, 5 Ferdinand, 6 Upson, 3 McCartney, 7 Ljungberg, 16 Noble, 17 Mullins, 29 Bowyer (9 Ashton, 58), 34 Boa Morte (11 Etherington, 59), 12 Cole (18 Spector, 81)
Subs unused: 21 Wright, 15 Solano
Bookings: None
Goals: Noble 90 (pen)

Liverpool: 25 Reina, 3 Finnan, 23 Carragher, 4 Hyypia, 12 Aurelio, 11 Benayoun (19 Babel, 72), 8 Gerrard, 14 Alonso, 7 Kewell (21 Lucas, 61), 9 Torres, 18 Kuyt
Subs unused: 30 Itandje, 15 Crouch, 37 Skrtel
Bookings: Aurelio 38, Torres 71, Alonso 88

Stats (BBC): West Ham – Liverpool
Possession: 50% – 50%
Shots on target: 2 – 6
Shots off target: 6 – 10
Corners: 4 – 7
Fouls: 12 – 19

Referee: Alan Wiley
Attendance: 34,977

Teams: West Ham v Liverpool

Liverpool face West Ham tonight for the first time this season and Rafa’s picked a strong side for a match the Reds are desperate to win after a run of league draws.

Pepe Reina is back in goal after Charles Itandje was allowed a chance against Havant on Saturday, and Jamie Carragher comes in for Martin Skrtel who’s back on the bench. Fabio Aurelio returns at left-back, Finnan stays in the side at right-back.

Javier Mascherono is banned for this match and so Rafa has recalled Xabi Alonso. Liverpool’s opening scorer Lucas has dropped back to the bench in place of captain Steven Gerrard. Hat-trick scorer Yossi Benayoun retains his place, to his delight as it’s against his former club. Harry Kewell comes in on the left-side of midfield. Up front Rafa has given Dirk Kuyt a chance in place of Peter Crouch who did very little on Saturday to convince the boss to give him another start, even though he did score. Top scorer Fernando Torres is also back in the attack.

West Ham: 1 Green, 2 Neill, 5 Ferdinand, 6 Upson, 3 McCartney, 7 Ljungberg, 16 Noble, 17 Mullins, 29 Bowyer, 34 Boa Morte, 12 Cole
Subs: 21 Wright, 9 Ashton, 11 Etherington, 15 Solano, 18 Spector

Liverpool: 25 Reina, 3 Finnan, 23 Carragher, 4 Hyypia, 12 Aurelio, 11 Benayoun, 8 Gerrard, 14 Alonso, 7 Kewell, 9 Torres, 18 Kuyt
Subs: 30 Itandje, 15 Crouch, 19 Babel, 21 Lucas, 37 Skrtel

Referee: Alan Wiley

Reports: LFC fan group looking at buyout

Reports locally suggest that there could be yet another possibility of rescue for Liverpool FC from the hands of the promise-breaking duo who currently own the club, with the announcement of a continental-style supporters group ready to buy out the club believed to be imminent.

Tom Hicks and George Gillett have shown in recent months that their intentions for the future of the club don’t even come close to matching those of the supporters, and with the Dubai International Capital Group seemingly waiting in the wings, Liverpool fans are hoping that Hicks and Gillett sell up and leave our club alone as soon as possible. Earlier today came a story that Robert Kraft had not yet ruled out a bid for the club, although he sounded far from convinced that he would be able to provide the financial help required to see Liverpool get back to being in league-winning contention.

Then this afternoon came the reports of the latest possibility of a way out of the Tom-and-George nightmare. BBC Radio Merseyside’s Roger Summerskill reported on the possible new direction for the future of the club on bulletins throughout the day on the station. He said: “I understand this new group – based locally and including lifelong Liverpool fans – is planning an operation which would involve buying the club and building the new stadium. I anticipate a statement to that effect sooner rather than later.” Continue reading Reports: LFC fan group looking at buyout

Kraft admits Reds interest, but sees issues

US businessman Robert Kraft has not completely ruled out the possibility of taking over from his hapless compatriots Tom Hicks and George Gillett at Liverpool Football Club.

Kraft has been linked with investment in the club in the past, before the current owners took over, but even now seems to have reservations. He owns one “soccer” team already, New England Revolution of the MLS in the US, and also owns a “football” team, that’s American Football, the New England Patriots outfit.

It’s no secret, despite desperate denials from Tom Hicks, that Dubai International Capital are looking to buy into Liverpool FC. They probably remain the only serious option to a disastrous future under Hicks and Gillett, but speaking to Sky Sports, Kraft admitted that there’s a slight possibility he’d consider taking over: “We haven’t ruled it out completely, but I’m worried a little bit. I want to be able to win whatever we do. But there are no rules in terms of spending on players.” Continue reading Kraft admits Reds interest, but sees issues

Reds fans vote on Hicks and Gillett

Following on from the success of their first survey, which received major coverage from the media, the LFC Supporters Network issued a second survey earlier this week.

This one comes in the wake of Hicks and Gillett succeeding in getting a loan totalling £350m. The interest payments on that loan will be the responsibility of Liverpool FC and the majority of the money covers the owners’ purchase costs in adding the club to their list of franchises. The stadium won’t be built until they have secured a further loan, which will again fall on the club to pay for, believed to be at up to another £300m.

A lot of supporters want to see Hicks and Gillett out of the club, as soon as possible, but how far would each individual supporter be willing to go to try and persuade them? That’s what this survey intends to find out.

If you’ve not done so already, please try and vote. The questions are below, and then below that are three of the different LFC forums that are carrying the survey, hopefully you’re a member of one of those and you’ll cast your vote. See the LFC Supporters Network website for more forums that are carrying the survey. Continue reading Reds fans vote on Hicks and Gillett

Momo goes, but Mascherano set to stay

Rafa Benitez is now in profit for this transfer window following the sale of Mohamed Sissoko to Juventus for a reported €11m, or £8.2m. Momo flew to Italy briefly from international duty with Mali to undergo a medical and the rest of the formalities and the deal was confirmed today.

momo-goes.jpgMomo was an important member of the Liverpool squad in the early days of his Anfield career, but two major injuries, including the one that left him wearing special glasses on the pitch, saw him struggling to recapture his old form. Eventually we saw Momo struggling more and more and so starting fewer and fewer games, a vicious circle that frustrated the player enough to demand a transfer. He’d only signed a new deal last June, running until 2011.

Liverpool signed the midfielder from Rafa’s former club Valencia in the summer of 2005 for £5.6m. The transfer caused Everton manager David Moyes a lot of grief from his own supporters after he’d announced publicly that his own move to sign the player was all but done. This announcement alerted Rafa to the availability of a player he both rated and had worked with before and he stepped in and hijacked Moyes’ deal.

Momo told Juve’s TV channel of his delight at joining the Italian club: “I’m happy to have joined such an important club; this move certainly constitutes a step forward in my career. I feel very excited to think about the possibility of playing with great players such as Buffon and Del Piero and to work under Ranieri, a great coach who I already know from my time at Valencia.” Continue reading Momo goes, but Mascherano set to stay

Huge interest payments will cripple Reds

Tom Hicks got his PR firm to confirm last night what we’ve known all along – Liverpool Football Club will be paying the interest on the loan he took out to make himself richer.

Hicks, alongside his long-lost partner George Gillett, persuaded Liverpool’s then chairman David Moores to sell his shares a year ago, and persuaded him to recommend the rest of the shareholders do the same. Moores, with the help of chief executive Rick Parry, convinced shareholders and supporters that these two guys from America were what we’d scoured the globe looking for: the investors that would get us back on par with Manchester United in terms of financial muscle, which was the key to getting us back in contention for league titles after a long barren period in the wilderness.

The new investors we were looking for would ensure that we could build a new stadium without having to reduce our transfer budget during the development period. In fact we were looking for investors with the financial capabilities to increase our transfer budget from the off, a long-term plan that would see us ultimately become self-sufficient, but in the early stages would see us working from that initial injection of capital. Continue reading Huge interest payments will cripple Reds