LONDON (AFP) – Everton majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri has insisted the Premier League club is not for sale after talks with a consortium looking to take over at Goodison Park.
Former Manchester United chief executive Peter Kenyon was the frontman of a group that entered into exclusive negotiations to purchase Everton.
The consortium, bankrolled by real estate tycoon Maciek Kaminski and mining magnate John Thornton, had reportedly hoped to complete a £500 million (S$800 million) deal for Everton.
But, in a message on Everton’s website on Thursday, Moshiri said that any new investment would only be a minority stake.
“There has been much talk of investment in our football club recently – even takeovers – but I want to clarify that there is no ‘for sale’ sign currently hanging outside Everton Football Club,” Moshiri said.
“It will always be pragmatic to explore all potential investment opportunities and, as I have been transparent about, I am focused on completing the financing for our fantastic new stadium as well as strengthening the playing squad, and that might include a minority investment. That will continue.
“But I want to reassure all of you that Everton Football Club is not for sale.”
Everton have posted total losses of more than £370 million over the last three financial years following huge investment in the playing squad for little reward.
Moshiri has become the target of fierce criticism from Everton fans, with the club’s narrow escape from relegation last season failing to save him from further abuse.
But Moshiri has called on Everton’s disgruntled supporters to judge after boss Frank Lampard has completed his transfer dealings in the summer window.
“My commitment to the club remains strong and focused and (director of football) Kevin Thelwell and the chairman are currently working hard to bring in new players to improve Frank Lampard’s squad,” Moshiri said.
“There will be new signings and I would ask supporters to judge us at the end of the transfer window.”