New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft has revealed he came close to buying Liverpool before the ill-fated reign of George Gillett and Tom Hicks, and is glad he rejected the opportunity to follow up his interest in the Anfield club.
Gillett and Hicks bought Liverpool for £435 million in 2007 amid great interest in the five-time European champions, and Kraft says he was among the interested parties at the time.
Kraft even went so far as to meet then Anfield chairman David Moores to discuss a potential deal for Liverpool, but the Patriots chief allowed his head to rule his heart and pulled out of a proposed move.
“Do you know I came close to buying Liverpool, right before George Gillett and Tom Hicks bought it? I met David Moores, a wonderful man, and it was quite an interesting episode because I love the game of soccer, too," Kraft told the Evening Standard.
He added: “My heart wanted to do it but my head told me, no.”
“I am relieved I didn’t buy Liverpool. Sometimes the best deals you do are the ones you don’t do.”
Kraft says his reasons for not making a formal offer for Liverpool were based around the salary structure in English football, with no wages cap in place unlike in many American sports.
Should such a measure be adopted, says Kraft, he would consider investing in a Premier League club again.
“I didn’t like the fact there was no salary cap," Kraft explained. "If English clubs ever had a salary cap then I would look at buying a Premier League club.”
Following the disastrous spell of Gillett and Hicks in charge at Anfield, Liverpool were bought by another American company - Fenway Sports Group - in 2010, whom Kraft hails as 'smart people'.
FSG have come for some criticism for their dealings in the transfer market since their takeover of the club, but have pleased the majority with their decision to redevelop Anfield rather than build a new stadium.