I won't lie to you folks. I toyed with the idea of a video post today -- some sea creatures or red pandas perhaps; something of that ilk. You see, as I sit here at 2 am, bedraggled and battered by real-life horrors, the Liverpool-related tidings are less than glad. An evening that began with the exciting capture of Iago Aspas, and all the Bard-related puns he presents, was then marred by the incessant chatter about the departure of Luis Suarez.
To be fair, Ed put in a Trojan shift yesterday as the stories rolled in. Inconsiderate bastard that he is, however, he has utterly divested the interweb of anything interesting that doesn't make me want to take up a habit of casual self-harm. Hence, the flirtation with presenting you, good readers, with some Mother Nature-based diversion.
I am, that said, nothing if not dogged, and in the interests of aspiring to some kind of journalistic integrity, I have found this irksome tale to drop at your feet, like a loyal beagle might deposit a mangled, inedible pheasant before his tweed-bedecked master. So, before you kick me for being a wretched cur, look at the needy, eager-to-please beagle-eyes. I tried, master.
Last week, during a radio interview with Boston station WEEI FM, John Henry faced some awkward questions about how FSG has been distributing its investment. Disgruntled Boston Red Sox fans have been understandably vocal in expressing their angst about the recently published figures, showing an increase of twenty two million pounds in the debt carried by Liverpool Football Club. The extenuating circumstances and context leading to that sum are of little interest to fans of a franchise who have their own anxieties about wanting to be the owners' priority.
Henry moved to disabuse Bostonians of the notion that Liverpool was a drain on FSG's resources. He took pains to point out the robust business model that LFC represents and reassured listeners that, ultimately, the club's building project would be self-financing. This was, no doubt, of some consolation to those who were anxious but it left a die-hard Redman like myself feeling a tad bilious.
"Fenway Sports Group expansion has never, and will never, take place at the expense of the Boston Red Sox," insisted Henry. "We have cash-flow from all of the other entities.There has not been a year in which FSG, as a whole, had an operating loss. And there hasn't been a year in which we've paid a dividend." So, that's alright then.
In a bid to further appease Bostonians, the FSG hierarch went on to describe Liverpool Football Club as though it were a fabulously exciting business prospect which, quite frankly, to him it is. Of course, we can be forgiven for having a degree of dubiety when it comes to his earnestness on this topic, given the context of the interview. Nonetheless, to hear the American speak, the famous old football club is quite the prize.
"At LFC we have only just begun there to build revenues. It has a global fan base and a global commercial appeal."
Despite further claims that the proposed Anfield renovations "will finance themselves," I am surely not the only Liverpool fan this morning wondering if, when Henry claims his company have begun to "build revenues," he means selling crown jewels like Luis Suarez and Pepe Reina and replacing them with more economical cogs in the FSG machine.
All may be well. Cynicism may be unfair and unjustified. It is probably best to maintain a wary but open perspective on all things FSG, just as many have chosen to do with Brendan Rodgers and the evolution of the team. The time has come, however, for FSG to earn the tolerance and patience which most have bestowed. Perhaps, a few words to us Liverpool supporters, John?