Liverpool owners Fenway Sports Group insist they have not received a takeover offer from a Chinese investment group – while a financial expert believes the club are worth “far more than the reported £700m valuation”.
Reports on Wednesday evening suggested that SinoFortone was attempting to buy the club from the Americans for around £700million.
A letter circulating on social media – dated February 10 2016 – claimed to be from SinoFortone’s London offices stating that they wanted to enter into discussions with Liverpool over potential investment.
It read: “We understand that this would be based around a valuation in the region of £700million; and that we are interested in funding the development of a new stadium in the docks area, and the redevelopment of both Anfield and Melwood, all in conjunction with Liverpool City Council; and the development of a series of football training academies across China.”
However, senior FSG officials told the Liverpool Echo that no such letter was received and are adamant that the club is not for sale. Furthermore they insist they haven’t had any discussions with SinoFortone about either part-investment or a potential takeover.
Meanwhile, financial expert Joe Beardwood believes the £700million valuation of Liverpool is “too low”.
Liverpool-born Beardwood, a former chief executive of Carling thinks it would take a lot more cash for Anfield’s American chiefs to consider selling up.
He told the Echo: “I’d be surprised if Fenway wanted to sell now but like everyone there will come a point where the numbers are just that big you can’t ignore it.
“We’ve seen China suddenly emerge over the past 12 months as a major financial force in football.
“It’s as if the government has suddenly decided to spend a shed load of money to take football seriously and do whatever it takes.
“To have one of Europe’s big five football brands under the ownership of a Chinese business would be a great coup for them.
“It will depend on what Fenway’s agenda is and where they see their cut-off. They’ll have a value in their own mind over when they’ll cash in.
“It feels to me £700million in this climate is on the low side. But that’s based on an assumption of being associated with a great brand to give their company a lot of good publicity.
“You’ve got to realise that most UK sports fans now know who Fenway Sports Group are.”