Dubai group again eyeing Anfield takeover swoop

DUBAI interests may again emerge as the main player in the battle to buy Liverpool.

Speculation is growing in the Middle East that Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, thought to have lost interest in the Anfield club last year as the credit crunch started to bite, may be preparing another bid.

But if that does happen, it will only be during the summer as Liverpool’s current American co-owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett try to extend their £350million loan with RBS and Wachovia — a prospect which, in the current financial climate, looks remote.

Sheikh Maktoum is the ruler of Dubai and founder of Dubai International Capital, who were involved in lengthy and ultimately unsuccessful negotiations to buy the club last year.

The Sheikh then took on the potential takeover on a personal level, but also opted to pull away several months ago.

It emerged last week that a Kuwaiti group, the oil-rich Al-Kharafi family, were involved in talks over a potential buyout, plus the £400m financing of the club’s proposed new stadium.

But the £600m asking price was considered too high and it is believed consortium leader Nasser Al-Kharafi has pulled out of negotiations.

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