Sir Martin Broughton reveals what ‘foreign billionaires’ told him about investing in Liverpool

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Sir Martin Broughton enjoyed little in the way of luck in his talks with billionaires over the subject of investing in Liverpool owing to their preexisting London links.

The ex-British Airways chairman admitted it didn’t encourage him to begin his search anew, though did offer his assistance on the matter if FSG required it.

“I didn’t speak to Josh Harris and David Blitzer, as they have gone back to Crystal Palace, but I did speak to the other people in our consortium and Chelsea I spoke to, in case there was an interest in becoming a co-investor, not to acquire, but to become a co-investor,” the Reds’ former chairman told the Echo.

“But they are already foreign billionaires with a pad in Knightsbridge or Chelsea or Kensington and they came to London fairly regularly and when they came to London it was to watch Chelsea.

“So they are all Chelsea fans and not in the 68-year way going down there to watch them in the way I am but that is their team and they enjoy going down there. They were attracted by the idea of investing in a football team and Chelsea specifically.

“When I approached them about Liverpool – and I didn’t approach them about Manchester United, I would never approach them about Manchester United – but the result would have been the same. [They would say] ‘well I’ve got a pad in London.’ So that’s not the type of person that is going to come in really at Liverpool.

“So I wasn’t keen enough to go out and search for investors, new investors again. I think if anybody wanted my assistance in it, I would be willing to consider it but not actively.”

The initial attractiveness of buying a club in London goes a long way to explaining why there’s already interest in Tottenham – not to mention the speedy resolution to Chelsea’s need for a change of hands in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine – despite the club not being on the market.

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It’s disheartening but it’s worth bearing in mind that not every possible Liverpool owner or investor will already have lodgings in the English capital or be unwilling to consider pumping money further north should they fail in their ventures down south.

Certainly, with Spurs being off the market and Stan Kroenke unlikely to sell up at Arsenal, both ourselves and Manchester United remain the most attractive options for investment.

FSG’s move to embrace another partner who could grow into taking up a majority share suggests they haven’t found the right option yet just as much as an unwillingness to let go of such a valuable team on their portfolio.

It’s increasingly looking to be a case of the long game for us in the market, though one that hopefully ends up with a fresh pair of hands picking up the club and building on Fenway’s successful regeneration project.

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