Liverpool 'accepts' Thai PM's bid

Updated: 25 February 2007 09:06 IST

English Premier League football team Liverpool FC has agreed in principle to accept Thailand's bid for a 30 per cent stake in the team.

Liverpool 'accepts' Thai PM's bid

Bangkok:

English Premier League football team Liverpool FC has agreed in principle to accept Thailand's bid for a 30 per cent stake in the team, the Thai prime minister said on Tuesday. Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra told reporters: "In principle, they agreed to give it to us and now we are working on details." Thaksin said he had been contacted by Liverpool Monday night via fax and email and that the two sides still had four points to discuss, but that an agreement for the purchase "should be finished by this week." He added: "By June, things will probably be concluded officially." Sports Authority of Thailand Governor Santhiparb Thechavanija told a local radio station that he was flying to England later Tuesday to work out fine points of the purchase and to invite Liverpool striker Michael Owen and midfielder Stephen Gerrard to witness the signing ceremony in Thailand. Lottery systemThai officials have said they planned to set up a company to raise the 4.6 billion baht they have offered for the 30 per cent stake in the club. The Sports Authority of Thailand, a government body, would hold 51 per cent of the company and the rest would be allocated to private investors. Tourist and Sport Minister Sonthaya Khunpleum said Tuesday that the sports authority would introduce a special lottery to raise money to cover the stake, as well as promote sports in Thailand and cover management costs. Officials hope to raise about 10 billion baht in the lottery plan that was to go before a weekly Cabinet meeting on Tuesday, Sonthaya said. Billionaire tycoon-turned-politician Thaksin at first hinted that he would use his personal fortune to acquire the Liverpool shares, but later gave the deal a populist spin by saying all Thais should have part ownership in the team. On Saturday, Thaksin said owning a stake in Liverpool could deliver economic benefits to local businesses through merchandising deals and help launch lucrative international careers for young Thai soccer players. Thaksin also wants Liverpool to set up a soccer academy in Thailand as part of the deal. (AP)



Topics : Football
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