Liverpool’s departing chairman Martin Broughton feels he is leaving the club in good hands as he prepares to hand over to New England Sports Ventures’ Tom Werner.
Broughton effectively signed off at last weekend’s match against West Ham, but his tenure does not officially end until Tuesday after which time the NESV chairman will take over.
Having endured some “difficult”, “complicated” and “uncomfortable” times during his seven-month stint Broughton is happy to be able to step aside confident Liverpool’s new owners will take the club forward.
“They are really getting down to it in a very professional way,” he said.
“I have been impressed with that. It’s the sort of thing I expected from them.
“They are taking their time, doing it carefully, thinking it through, not being rushed. They’re the right people.”
Broughton admits his short tenure has not been the smoothest of rides but is satisfied with the conclusion, having been appointed in April to find new owners to replace the maligned Tom Hicks and George Gillett.
“There have been times when it hasn’t been so much fun, but when I look back, I’m pleased I did it and I have enjoyed it,” he said.
“It was more difficult (a challenge than expected). I thought there would be a few more bidders at an earlier stage.
“It took a little bit longer, and certainly in the end it turned out to be rather more complicated than I predicted.
“I think the low point was pretty early on, when we had a situation with unpopular owners, the manager (Rafael Benitez) going – so no manager – stories about Stevie (Gerrard) wanting to go, stories about Fernando (Torres) wanting to go.
“That looked a pretty uncomfortable position at the time.
“But the highlight is getting the deal done with the right people, no question; actually delivering what we promised – the right owners.
“I am very proud of it. It has been great to come in and deliver on a promise.”
Broughton, a Chelsea fan, paid tribute to the club’s supporters and stressed his belief that things were now moving in the right direction.
“This is a fantastic club with terrific supporters,” he added.
“It’s been an emotional time for them, it’s been a difficult time – I’ve understood that – but they’ve kept the faith, and they need to keep the faith now.
“The team’s going to come good from here.”
Werner’s appointment was no real surprise, considering his close working relationship with NESV principal owner John Henry.
“It is a great honour to be taking over from Martin as chairman of this great club,” he said.
“We have a tremendous foundation to build on for this season and the long-term.
“Our goal is to work tirelessly for our supporters and deliver the best conditions for a winning team and silverware in the trophy room.”
Henry backed Werner to help steer the club towards more profitable times after their recent decline on the pitch.
“I am delighted that Tom has agreed to take over as chairman,” said Henry.
“It is a crucial role as we move forward and no-one is better placed than Tom to take up the reins and help provide leadership and vision in the coming years.
“It has been a pleasure for us to work with Martin. He was appointed in difficult circumstances and faced challenging times yet he always focused on doing what was in the best long-term interests of the club.
“We wish him well in all that he does in the future.”