League approve Liverpool takeover

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The Premier League have given the go-ahead to New England Sports Ventures' takeover of Liverpool.

The green light to the takeover by the American company, owners of the Boston Red Sox, means that only the High Court action by current owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett stands in the way of the £300m deal going through.

The league said in a statement: "The Premier League has met with the owners and directors of New England Sports Ventures (NESV) regarding their proposed takeover of Liverpool FC and has received details, in accordance with Premier League rules, of the proposed company and ownership structure as well as the make-up of the new board."

The statement continued: "The Premier League is satisfied, with the information provided, that the individuals NESV intend to put in place in the event they complete their takeover of Liverpool FC meet the criteria set out in our owners' and directors' test.

"The board of the Premier League will continue working with Liverpool FC in regard to this process, however, we are aware that the formal completion of this takeover is yet to be resolved and it is therefore inappropriate for us to offer any further comment at this time."

If the takeover is not completed by next Friday then the Royal Bank of Scotland could put Kop Holdings, the company owned by Hicks and Gillett, into administration over their unpaid £280million debt.

If that happens, Liverpool would be at risk of a nine-point deduction.

Initially it had been thought the Premier League would not penalise the club for Kop Holdings becoming insolvent, but now the threat of a points deduction has become a serious one.

Under Premier League rules, the fact that the holding company is solely concerned with the ownership of Liverpool and football-related matters could trigger the nine-point penalty.

West Ham had been used as an example of why the Reds might escape in deduction if administration goes ahead when it was owned by Icelandic bank Straumur. The Hammers, however, were a solvent part of a whole portfolio of different companies while Kop Holdings is solely concerned with Liverpool.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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