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Last Updated: Monday, 14 November 2005, 09:24 GMT
Kraft admits Liverpool interest
LIVERPOOL SEEKING INVESTORS
Liverpool chief executive Rick Parry
March 2004 Thai PM in talks to buy stake in club
May 2004 Steve Morgan makes first bid
June 2004 Thai PM ends interest in Liverpool
August 2004 Steve Morgan's second bid rejected
Sept 2004 Thai media tycoon makes aborted investment bid
Dec 2004 Morgan abandons bid
Nov 2005 Kraft family linked with investment
American billionaire Robert Kraft has refused to rule out investment in Liverpool after a meeting with Anfield chief executive Rick Parry.

Parry held talks in the US with the Krafts, who own New England Patriots NFL team, about a proposed new stadium.

Kraft told BBC Radio Five Live: "Liverpool is a great brand and it's something our family respects a lot.

"We're always interested in opportunities and growing, so you never know what can happen."

Liverpool also refused to totally reject the possibility of future investment, but stressed no deal was imminent.

"I've known them since 2001 and had an invitation to visit the Gillette stadium, one of the USA's few privately-funded stadia," said Parry.

Parry added: "It gave us a chance to discuss the way they funded the ground's construction.

"Being an international break, it was a convenient time to accept the invitation and it proved an interesting trip.

"It was hardly a secret mission. I attended an NFL match with 80,000 spectators."

Liverpool are still intent on moving to a new stadium, but the estimated price of the proposed new Stanley Park development has risen from 80m to 150m, so it is believed the Liverpool board think outside investment is inevitable.

A sponsorship deal means Arsenal's new stadium will be known as the Emirates Stadium, and it is thought Liverpool could be interested in a similar arrangement.

The Kraft Group specialises in paper and packaging, sports and entertainment and venture investment. The Group bought New England Patriots for 98m in 1994 and also owns Major League Soccer team New England Revolution.

Liverpool have been linked with major investment several times, but nothing has come to fruition.

Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shiniwatra offered 60m for a 30% stake in the club, but that failed to develop, and lifelong fan and building magnate Steve Morgan has made several failed bids to up his stake in the club.

Any deal would not mirror Malcolm Glazer's takeover of Manchester United, with chairman David Moores not looking to relinquish his entire 51% shareholding.

Parry will be off on his travels again soon, attending the Soccerex football business convention in Dubai which starts on Sunday.




WATCH AND LISTEN
Interview: Robert Kraft



SEE ALSO
Morgan withdraws Liverpool offer
21 Dec 04 |  Liverpool
Liverpool reject Morgan bid
24 Aug 04 |  Liverpool
Thais bullish on Reds deal
05 Jun 04 |  Liverpool
Thaksin confident over Reds
14 May 04 |  Liverpool


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