Liverpool’s owners FSG have accepted a £540m investment that will see basketball superstar LeBron James become a partner.
The NBA superstar has held shares in Liverpool since 2011 – but will now take on a larger share of ownership.
That’s after his private investment deal with RedBird Capital Partners, worth $750m.
And James and his business partner, Maverick Carter, will now become the first black partners in FSG’s history. News of the investment was announced by the Boston Globe.
It will also mean that James, one of the world’s richest sports stars, will have greater say in the running of Liverpool.
James will also become part-owner of the Boston Red Sox and FSG’s other sporting subsidiaries.
The investment will also hand FSG a timely boost in the transfer market. With Jurgen Klopp’s side struggling to make the top-four this season, new signings look to be needed.
While Klopp has ruled out wholesale changes of his squad, speculation will now begin about who they might sign.
Indeed, it was reported at the weekend that Klopp will prioritise three major signings this summer.
Top of Klopp’s agenda are a new attacker to revitalise his ageing strikeforce.
ndeed, all of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane will be 29 and over come the end of the 2021/22 season. Salah aside, both Firmino and Mane have suffered serious dips in form this season.
Indeed, Paul Merson has explained why Firmino could be the one who is soon sweating on his place.
And while targets have not been named, several big names, including Kylian Mbappe, have been touted of late.
It will also come as no surprise to see Liverpool targeting defensive reinforcements given their issues this season. The Athletic claims Ozan Kabak is auditioning for a long-term role at Anfield.
He signed on loan in January and the Reds do have an option to make the move permanent. However, RB Leipzig’s Ibrahima Konate, Marseille’s Duje Caleta-Car and David Carmo of Braga all remain alternatives.
Klopp will also likely need to sign a replacement for the departing Georginho Wijnaldum in midfield.
The Dutchman has continued to be as reliable as ever in the Reds’ engine room, amid swirling uncertainty over whether he will be at the club next season.
Wijnaldum’s contract expires at the end of the campaign and no concrete news over an extension has so far surfaced.
However, a report on Saturday morning claimed Wijnaldum is in the final stages of securing a ‘dream’ move away from Anfield.
Klopp and Co are scouring Europe to find a replacement capable of taking the Reds further. The likes of Yves Bissouma and Florian Neuhaus have both been strongly linked.
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James complimentary of Liverpool
James, meanwhile, has never hidden from his support for Liverpool, nor his wish to take on a greater role.
The LA Lakers star has acted as an ambassador for Liverpool at times in the past, and has often arrived to games dressed in replica shirts.
And when Liverpool partnered with Nike last summer, he sent a letter stating his ambitious plans for the club.
“Nine years ago, I went to my first game at Anfield,” the letter read.
“I’ll never forget the feeling of walking through the Shankly Gates, the atmosphere and the fans. It was an adrenaline rush and one of the greatest experiences I’ve had watching sports.
“Liverpool FC is admired across the world and I’ve learned firsthand that it’s the people who make the community special.
“Family and community are truly at the heart of everything they do. No matter where they are.
“It’s the Liverpool way. They are a family.
“And having been part of the Nike family for over 18 years, I know how important that is to all of us.
“Today, I am excited to invite you to celebrate another moment of greatness in their journey – the partnership of Nike and Liverpool FC.
“You’re one of the first to receive the kit that hono[u]rs the team and this new chapter.
“Join me in officially welcoming Liverpool FC to the Nike family. ‘By far the greatest team, the world has ever seen…””
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