Hicks The Huckster – Under The Skin Of The Liverpool Owner

The Liverpool reign of US “entrepreneurs” George Gillett Junior and Thomas O. Hicks has been full of oddball news stories from the two warring co-owners’ busy PR departments. But none were stranger than last week’s space-filler about Liverpool’s (latest) sale process. Had the papers waited a day, they’d have had their story. Kop Football’s accounts were published and, as last year, had “material uncertainties” written all over them, as well as a genuine revelation that the banks wanted their loans repaid two months ago, rather than in two months’ time, as most commentators had assumed. Instead, the papers took the following quote from an interview Hicks gave America’s Sports Business Journal: “We’ve owned it (Liverpool) three years, we won’t own it in five,” and translated it as “Hicks says Liverpool sale may take two years,” thereby apparently crushing hopes that the Texan would soon be on his way. At first glance, the headline and “story” plainly didn’t match, in the style of the Daily Mail’s countless “asylum-seekers on benefits” stories over the years. Hicks must surely have said something else which, alongside the quote, would have justified the (Times) headline. Well, he didn’t. But perusal of the whole interview shows that he did say enough to justify plenty of other headlines. Two paragraphs above the quotes used by the UK press, the article’s author, Bruce Schoenfeld (“a writer in...

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