Fenway Sports Group (FSG) has put Liverpool up for sale in a stunning move on Monday lunchtime.
The Boston-based owners have been in charge at Anfield since a £300m takeover in October 2010. The group also owns Major League Baseball’s Boston Red Sox and the National Hockey League’s Pittsburgh Penguins. Their reign has largely been one of huge success, though they did come in for criticism over their involvement in trying to join the European Super League.
John W. Henry is the principal owner, with the 73-year-old owning estimated 40 per cent of stock in FSG. Liverpool chairman Tom Werner controls the second-largest block of shares.
They have also struggled to compete financially with some of the more rich clubs both in the Premier League and in Europe. Despite that, their appointment of Jurgen Klopp in October 2015 has proved a masterstroke.
Under Klopp, Liverpool have won the Premier League, the Champions League, the FA Cup and Carabao Cup. They also won the FIFA Club World Cup and Euro Super Cup.
But behind the scenes there has often been rumblings that they could sell up if the right buyers were found.
Indeed, the sold a hefty stake in the club to RedBird Capital Partners worth an estimated £540m in March 2021. Basketball star LeBron James holds a place among their shareholders as a result.
Now, according to David Ornstein of The Athletic, FSG have officially put the Reds up for sale.
He says their sales deck has been produced for interested parties. And Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley have been appointed to assist with the evaluation process. Recent reports value Liverpool FC an estimated £2billion.
Fenway Sports Group release statement confirming Liverpool sale plans
In a statement, FSG said they are putting Liverpool up for sale as they feel it is in the best interests of the club.
It read: “There have been a number of recent changes of ownership and rumours of changes in ownership at EPL clubs. And inevitably we are asked regularly about Fenway Sports Group’s ownership in Liverpool.
“FSG has frequently received expressions of interest from third party seeking to become shareholders in Liverpool. FSG has said that before under the right terms and conditions we would consider new shareholders if it was in the best interests of Liverpool as a club.
“FSG remains fully committed to the success of Liverpool, both on and off the pitch.”
During FSG’s ownership, Anfield has been redeveloped, with a new £110million Main Stand. Meanwhile, the Anfield Road Stand is also being enhanced. That £80m project will be completed next summer and boost capacity to around 61,000.
FSG has also overseen the club’s move from Melwood to a new £50m training facility in nearby Kirkby.
Rumours of their sale, though, have never been far away.
Back in May, Werner insisted FSG had no plans to sell up. He told The Athletic: “Yes, we still see it as a long-term project. We are hungry to win more trophies for the club.”