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Page last updated at 20:45 GMT, Tuesday, 22 April 2008 21:45 UK

Owner Hicks braves Anfield crowd

Liverpool co-owner Tom Hicks at the Liverpool v Chelsea game
Tom Hicks belts out "You'll never walk alone" at Anfield

Liverpool co-owner Tom Hicks was at Anfield for the club's Champions League semi-final, first-leg against Chelsea, despite fears of crowd hostility.

American Hicks is unpopular among Reds fans as a boardroom battle with co-owner George Gillett rages on.

A couple of fans shouted insults at him, but a feared major fan protest did not materialise during the 1-1 draw.

Hicks was in the director's box just a few feet in front of chief executive Rick Parry, who he has asked to resign.

Gillett was not at the ground but Dubai International Consortium chief executive Samir Al-Ansari and chief negotiator Amanda Staveley were in the executive area at his invitation.

Both co-owners had been advised against attending by police, who were concerned about fans targeting them.

606: DEBATE
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DIC lost the race to buy the club last year but Gillett is reportedly keen to sell his stake to the group.

Gillett and Hicks are in the middle of a bitter power struggle.

The American duo took control of Liverpool in a deal worth 218.9m in February 2007 but the relationship between the two men broke down some time ago, with the pair no longer on speaking terms.

Their falling-out has led to a war of words breaking out in the Anfield boardroom and in a television interview last week, Hicks defiantly outlined his own plans for the future of the club as well again calling for Parry's resignation and claiming the chief executive's tenure was a "disaster".

Gillett, an ally of Parry, responded by saying he would not sell his stake to Hicks and by inviting DIC to the first leg of the European showdown with Chelsea, he has made a clear statement of intent.

DIC has been trying to buy the club for 18 months, having been beaten by Hicks and Gillett just over a year ago.

The investment group seemed to have tied up a deal at the turn of the year, only for Hicks to send a representative to Dubai for talks before pulling the plug on the possible sale.

After the Chelsea game, Liverpool boss rafael Benitez revealed that he had spoken to Hicks ahead of the game.

He said the pair discussed the possibility of a meeting of all parties regarding the future of the club's ownership and direction.




see also
Liverpool v Chelsea
21 Apr 08 |  Europe
Zenden on Champions League
21 Apr 08 |  Europe
Alan Hansen's column
21 Apr 08 |  Europe
Gillett hits back at Hicks in row
17 Apr 08 |  Liverpool
Parry hits back at Anfield owner
11 Apr 08 |  Liverpool
Hicks calls for Parry resignation
10 Apr 08 |  Liverpool
Liverpool co-owner reveals split
28 Mar 08 |  Liverpool
Hicks ends talks with Dubai group
10 Mar 08 |  Liverpool
DIC to offer Hicks share of power
08 Mar 08 |  Liverpool
Crouch & Hyypia expected to stay
04 Mar 08 |  Liverpool
Hicks plots total control of Reds
04 Mar 08 |  Liverpool
Hicks ready to block Gillett sale
28 Feb 08 |  Liverpool
Hicks holds talks over Liverpool
27 Feb 08 |  Liverpool
Hicks plans long stay at Anfield
27 Jan 08 |  Liverpool
Liverpool complete 350m package
25 Jan 08 |  Liverpool
Liverpool owners deny sale claims
17 Jan 08 |  Liverpool
Consortium pulls out of Reds bid
31 Jan 07 |  Liverpool
Liverpool braced for takeover bid
20 Jan 08 |  Liverpool


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