Supporters’ group Spirit of Shankly is hopeful its first meeting with Liverpool’s hierarchy will lead to the repairing of relationships fractured by the club’s involvement in the failed European Super League.
Members of the group will sit down with Reds chief executive Billy Hogan and other club representatives on Tuesday to discuss how to move forward after the growing disconnect between board and fan-base peaked with plans for a ‘big six’ breakaway.
“It is an encouraging first step as the club attempt to restore fans’ faith and need for positive change,” said an SOS statement, which expects talks to continue in the coming weeks.
Liverpool are the first of the rebel clubs to publicly agree to meet fans, brought about after SoS wrote to Hogan with the results of a survey in which members overwhelmingly (89 per cent) called for greater engagement and supporter-led representation at board level.
Responding to the group, Hogan wrote: “It is positive that SOS has opted to re-engage with the club as it will allow the necessary conversations to take place, for views to be aired and, hopefully, for workable solutions to be found in keeping with the best interests of the club.”
John W Henry apologised to Liverpool fans in the wake of the European Super League.
He said: “I want to apologise to all the fans and supporters of Liverpool football club for the disruption I caused over the last 48 hours.
“It goes without saying, but should be said, that the project put forward was never going to stand without the support of the fans.
“No-one ever thought differently in England. Over the last 48 hours you were very clear that it would not stand. We heard you. I heard you.
“And I want to apologise to Jurgen [Klopp], to Billy [Hogan], to the players and everyone that worked so hard at LFC to make our fans proud. They have absolutely no responsibility for this disruption.
“They were the most disrupted and unfairly so. This is what hurts most. They love your club and work to make you proud every single day. I know the entire LFC team has the expertise, leadership and passion necessary to rebuild trust and help us move forward.
“More than a decade ago when we signed up for the challenges of football we dreamed of what you dreamed of and we’ve worked hard to improve your club. Our work isn’t done and I hope that you understand that even when we make mistakes we’re trying to work in your club’s best interest.
“In this endeavour I’ve let you down. Again, I’m sorry and I alone am responsible for the unnecessary negativity brought forward over the last couple of days.”