Former Liverpool Owner Tom Hicks: Rafael Benitez Bought Bad Players And 'Lost' The Club

Hicks admits he doesn't 'understand' fans' anger
Former Liverpool co-owner Tom Hicks has expressed his anger towards ‘an organised conspiracy’ between board members that lost him the ownership of the Reds and has insisted former boss Rafael Benitez was responsible for the club’s demise.

The American, along with former Liverpool co-owner George Gillett, have tried to contest through every legal venue to stop New England Sports Ventures from purchasing the Anfield outfit.

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However on Friday afternoon the American consortium, who own the Boston Red Sox, completed the sale of the club after being given the green light in all legal aspects.

Hicks and Gillet then decided to drop their £1 billion Texas lawsuit against the Royal Bank of Scotland and the club’s directors, though they plan to bring the fight to England with regards to legal damages.

For the first time, the Texan spoke out about the turbulent sale process which saw the American duo go head-to-head with the Liverpool board in the High Court.

He also spoke out about accusations that he and Gillett were to blame for not investing substantial amounts of money into the club.

“We spent £300million on players, £150m net - I think it's the second or third highest in the English Premier League," Hicks told Sky Sports.
 
"You never read about that in the media.”

The 64-year-old lashed out at former Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez and insisted his poor judgement in signing players was the reason behind the club’s problems on the pitch.

He added: "I read a very interesting article in which Alex Ferguson said Rafa had more money to spend than the rest of us, he just bought bad players.

"Rafa lost the club. We didn't finish at the top - that's not the fault of the owners, we spent good money. Rafa has to take accountability for his own results.

"When we finished second the year before, people weren't nearly as angry. Liverpool fans are just unbelievably strong supporters and they want to win.”

The Texan revealed his devastation and frustration in losing ownership of Liverpool and how it has affected him personally.

Hicks said: "It's hurt my family tremendously. This is a valuable asset that has been swindled away from me in an epic swindle. I'm very angry about it.

Hicks admitted he knew the sale of the Premier League club was inevitable, however he believes NESV are not suitable owners to take the reins at Anfield.

"I accepted the club would be sold in April," he continued. "We know there are better owners around the world to own Liverpool than the Boston Red Sox group.

"The right owner would have paid Gillett and Hicks a fair price, and had the resources to buy players and build a better stadium.”

Hicks and Gillet have been blamed for Liverpool's plight by the majority of the club's fans, but despite being aware of this, the businessmen admits he can’t understand why this is the case.

"I really can't [understand fans' anger]...I've been in the sports business for nearly 15 years.

The sale of Liverpool to NESV did not go through until the last minute, as the Royal Bank of Scotland were due the debt repayment.

Hicks also claimed he and Gillett managed to gather the money to pay back the debt due to the Royal Bank of Scotland on Friday afternoon.

He said: "I can't get into details but I can confirm, yes, we did have the money to pay off RBS in its entirety.”

The American businessman revealed he will continue to legally prove he is right in this turbulent dispute.

He concluded: "I just want the truth to come out in the courts, and I want the fans...to not think of Tom Hicks the way some of them do."


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