Liverpool FC Sale Official, Ramifications for the Sox?
The saga to buy Liverpool FC has finally ended with the New England Sports Ventures group taking over the ownership of the top notch European Premier League team. It was a rocky road this past week or so, with the previous owners attempting to block the sale and other bidders jumping in with higher offers last minute. Now that it is over, John Henry, Tom Werner and Larry Lucchino can take a deep breath and figure out how to right the ship in England…and Boston. While this sale may not mean anything to many of the Red Sox faithful here in the US, it certainly raises a bunch of questions in my head about the investment these 3 guys have in the Red Sox. Liverpool is not a small time or money investment and neither is the Red Sox organization. Both are high profile and have huge fan bases. Because of this new move, will the New England Sports Ventures be focusing more time overseas and less in Kenmore Square? (more after the jump)
Before delving into the time issue, let’s first take a look at whether these 3 partners will even remain together over the next year or so. Dan Shaughnessy of the Boston Globe laid it out in his column on Friday:
"Could they be breaking up that old gang over at Yawkey Way? Larry Lucchino is always a candidate to work for the commissioner, and Tom Werner no doubt will try to buy the Dodgers if they go up for sale after the McCourt divorce case is settled."
Although no offers are on the table right now (that we know about), the purchase of Liverpool certain raises an eyebrow to the idea that the Red Sox may no longer be the focus of the ownership group. Whether the 3-head monster breaks up or not. Especially with the decline in the Liverpool club over the last few years, the focus will need to be on bringing them back to a competitive level at the same time the Sox need to make a lot of decisions to return to glory on the other side of the Atlantic. The timing is interesting and may become more troubling if any of the 3 musketeers decides to jump ship for a better offer.
I don’t have any answers and the possibilities are endless, including the focus remaining on the Sox in Boston with secondary investments overseas being controlled and managed by other folks, those who maybe know more about European football than these guys. The likelihood New England Sports Ventures buys and then isn’t involved in the intimate details of the club is not likely however. You know Henry, Werner and Lucchino are dreaming of the day that Liverpool FC plays on the Fenway grass like this past year’s Celtic FC vs. Sporting Portugal match. They are salivating at the idea of marketing a top team in the realm of world sports to the competition friendly Boston fan base. With all that comes sacrifice…who loses in this acquisition? Only time will tell…