Saudi eyes 50% stake in Liverpool

27 September 2009 05:15
A Saudi prince wants to buy half of Liverpool in a deal worth up to £350million, according to reports on Sunday.[LNB] Prince Faisal bin Fahd bin Abdullah al-Saud -- who chairs Saudi holding company Fama Group and the F6 sports investment firm -- was quoted by the Saudi Al-Riyadh newspaper as saying that "we are seeking, at present, to own a 50% stake in the club.[LNB] "The value of the transaction, which is nearing resolution, will be between £200million and £350million."[LNB] The comments come on the heels of an F6 statement released Saturday that said Prince Faisal had signed a memorandum of understanding with one of Liverpool's American co-owners, George Gillett Jr, as well as Richard Petty Motorsports. [LNB] Liverpool, which is owned by Mr Gillett and Tom Hicks, is about £245million in debt. [LNB] The American co-owners have been working to bring down Liverpool's debt, and the club's managing director said earlier this month that the US duo had paid £60million of the debt burden when the loan used to buy the club in 2007 expired in July. [LNB] Calls for comment from Fama Group were referred to F6, which sent a general statement about the investment deal with Mr Gillett. [LNB] If the deal with Prince Faisal goes through, it would mark the latest investment in British football by investors from the oil-rich Gulf region. [LNB] Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, a member of Abu Dhabi's ruling family, bought Manchester City for an undisclosed sum a year ago, ending former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra's control of the club. [LNB] Sulaiman al-Fahim, the Emirati businessman who helped broker the Manchester City takeover for Sheikh Mansour, has also taken control of Portsmouth.

Source: Eurosport