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Page last updated at 13:22 GMT, Friday, 7 November 2008

Fans make Liverpool takeover plea

George Gillett (left) and Tom Hicks
Gillett and Hicks have denied they are actively searching for a buyer

A group of fans hoping to buy Liverpool have urged the current American owners to sell the club to them.

Share Liverpool FC (SLFC) announced plans in January to raise £500m to launch a takeover amid concerns over the way the club was being run.

In an open letter sent to Tom Hicks and George Gillett the group stated it is now keen to open negotiations.

"We would like to buy the club and invite you to sit down with us to agree a deal," it read.

SLFC is led by lifelong fan Rogan Taylor, the head of the Football Research Unit at the University of Liverpool, and has the backing of former Liverpool stars John Aldridge, Phil Thompson and John Barnes .

Hicks and Gillett have consistently denied they want to sell the club but plans for a new stadium have been delayed amid reports of financial problems.

We believe we represent a real opportunity for both of you to bring to an end a troubled period of ownership

SLFC statement
Dubai Investment Capital, the investment arm of the Dubai Royal Family, had revived its interest after losing out to the Americans with an initial takeover bid.

Gillett was reported to be interested in selling his stake but Hicks blocked any potential deal.

Now, however, SLFC believes it can provide a suitable alternative to the American regime.

"We understand you have decided to relinquish your ownership of Liverpool FC and are actively looking for a buyer," SLFC continued in the letter.

"We are confident that if you're willing to sell to us for a fair price, we would have sufficient backing (either from the fans alone, or with a suitable partner).

"We believe we represent a real opportunity for both of you to bring to an end a troubled period of ownership; an 'exit strategy' that would lead to admiration and respect from many.

"Doing the honourable thing and selling the club to the fans would return it to the values that made it the most successful football club in England and one of the best supported clubs in the world.

"We'd also like you to be able to leave with dignity. George, in an interview last March, you said, "Our goal from the beginning was to add….to the lustre (of Liverpool FC)…".

"At this point you can only achieve this by doing the right thing - and that is to offer the club to the fans."

A spokeswoman for Gillett refused to talk about the letter, while Liverpool have said they will not be making any comment on the matter.

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see also
Benitez to discuss new Reds deal
07 Nov 08 |  Liverpool
Aldridge raises Liverpool concern
03 Oct 08 |  Liverpool
Liverpool supporters hold protest
13 Sep 08 |  Liverpool
Ownership rules concern FA chief
12 Sep 08 |  Football
Liverpool fans eye takeover talks
09 Apr 08 |  Business
Liverpool co-owner reveals split
28 Mar 08 |  Liverpool
Business backing for LFC fan bid
28 Feb 08 |  Business
Hicks ready to block Gillett sale
28 Feb 08 |  Liverpool
Hicks holds talks over Liverpool
27 Feb 08 |  Liverpool
Liverpool complete £350m package
25 Jan 08 |  Liverpool
Fans make Liverpool takeover move
31 Jan 08 |  Business
Q&A - Liverpool refinance plans
21 Jan 08 |  Liverpool
Duo complete Liverpool takeover
27 Mar 07 |  Liverpool

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