Thursday 14 December 2017

Liverpool chairman begins fightback against Hicks after injunction

Paul Kelso

Liverpool chairman Martin Broughton and his legal advisers will this morning begin considering how to overturn the temporary restraining order filed by Tom Hicks that last night halted the sale of the club.

Broughton and John W Henry, owner of New England Sports Ventures, were close to sealing a £300m (€340m) deal before Hicks' dramatic 11th-hour intervention.

Discussions will now take place at the London offices of the club's solicitors, Slaughter & May, this morning with a full board meeting expected to follow once a legal strategy has been agreed.

One option being considered is to seek an order from a UK court ruling that the Texan writ has no jurisdiction.

An alternative will be to seek to have the temporary restraining order overturned by a higher court in Texas. This, though, could take longer and there is already an expectation that the case will take a couple of days to resolve leaving Liverpool's future uncertain until next week.

The timetable for resolving this issue may depend on whether Henry remains in the UK and sticks with the arranged plan to attend the Merseyside derby on Sunday.

Hicks’ suit, filed against Royal Bank of Scotland, club chairman Broughton, directors Christian Purslow and Ian Ayre, NESV and Liverpool finance director Philip Nash, claims damages totalling approximately $1.6bn (over €1.4bn).

The suit claims that RBS, the board and NESV conspired in an “epic swindle” to sell the club for less than its value.

Hicks accuses Broughton, Purslow and Ayre of acting “as pawns of RBS” for ignoring offers he says were higher than the £300m (€340m) offered by NESV.

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