15 Oct 2010

Liverpool co-owners battling on in Texas court

9:27 am on 15 October 2010

Time's running out for Liverpool football club to sell up and clear its huge debts before a bank deadline.

Although the sale of the Premier League club to New England Sports Ventures, the owners of the Boston Red Sox baseball team, had appeared set to proceed, the current American owners are refusing to lose their holdings without an extended fight.

Fresh proceedings got underway in Dallas then were adjourned until early Saturday NZT.

Earlier on Friday Liverpool's chief creditors secured a High Court injunction restraining an earlier ruling from the Texas district court, which put a temporary hold on the sale.

Liverpool's creditors, the Royal Bank of Scotland, have threatened to call in the debts by the end of the week, forcing the five-time European champions into administration and an automatic, and crippling, nine-point penalty.

The once-proud and most successful-ever English club is languishing in the Premier League's relegation zone, and they play bitter rivals Everton this weekend.

Singapore businessman Peter Lim has withdrawn his 320 million pounds offer to buy Liverpool, saying it's become clear to him that the board wants to sell the club to NESV to the exclusion of all other parties, regardless of the merits of their bids.