Mar 5 2008 EXCLUSIVE by Tony Barrett, Liverpool Echo
GEORGE Gillett is pondering a vastly improved offer for Liverpool Football Club from Dubai International Capital.
Sources close to DIC suggest the bid would allow Gillett to walk away from the club with an £80m profit.
But sources in the Gillett camp argue the figure is £40m.
The revised offer was put to Gillett late last night.
DIC indicated they would not raise their offer again even though their interest in buying Liverpool remains as strong as ever.
Gillett instructed his lawyers to attend the meeting at a top London hotel on his behalf, and DIC was represented by top businesswoman Amanda Staveley.
Liverpool chief executive Rick Parry was also there having been invited by DIC and Gillett to represent the best interests of the club.
Gillett was unable to attend in person as he is recovering from illness at his home in Vail, Colorado, but he was in constant phone contact with all parties.
Sources close to Gillett dispute the £80m figure, insisting the offer would have given the American a profit closer to £40m.
But what is beyond any doubt is the fact DIC raised their initial offer to win his 50% stake.
With Tom Hicks still sticking to his guns and insisting he is not looking to sell his stake, the future of the club remains delicately poised.
Unless one party gives way the present situation is likely to continue.
The impasse has caused uproar among many Liverpool fans with the Spirit of Shankly group planning a protest against the club’s American owners during half time at tonight’s Premiership home clash with West Ham.
Spokesman Neil Atkinson today told the ECHO the time has now come for Gillett and Hicks to quit the club.
He said: “We can only urge Tom Hicks and George Gillett to take the DIC offer and leave. Liverpool FC
“Al-Ansari talks about Tom Hicks’s valuation of the club being ‘in dreamland’; Mr Hicks is further in dreamland if he thinks he will ever be accepted at LFC.
“He’s a rich man, a business man, but surely, being as rich as he is, he wants to be able to enjoy his investments.
“If he tries to grin and bear it then it emphasises what we already know – he’s only in it for one reason - the money and the money alone.
“Let Mr Hicks and Mr Gillett go now with profit and a modicum of grace. Let us start again with new owners, keep our eyes open and work with them to get that family silver polished.”
Rogan Taylor, head of ShareliverpoolFC which has launched a fans’ buy-out bid, said: “We will continue to monitor this situation, but it won’t lessen the effort and commitment we are putting into our serious and robust proposal.
“We would like to see the fans have a full and proper say in the running of their club. We are ready to talk to the owners about making that a reality.
“I strongly believe that ShareLiverpoolFC will have a significant role to play - we have strong momentum following launch and fans are joining by the hundreds on a daily basis.”