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Tue 23 Jan 2007 10:50 AM

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Liverpool bid: DIC don’t ‘walk alone’

But US billionaire George Gillett's renewed interest in the English football club hasn't stopped Dubai.

Dubai International Capital, the investment arm of the Dubai ruling family, is pressing ahead with its $880m bid for Liverpool Football Club, despite renewed interest from an American rival.

George Gillett Jr, the billionaire owner of the Montreal Canadiens ice hockey team, is thought to have made a counter bid for the 51% stake in the club held by Liverpool chairman David Moores.

It was reported that Gillett could be prepared to pay around $336m for the club, which is $30m more than DIC’s offer.

However, the DIC bid also includes a pledge to pay off $158m in debt and build a 60,000-capacity stadium.

A source in Dubai told ArabianBusiness.com that the DIC is keen to complete the deal, which is in a period of exclusive negotiation. Due diligence is thought to be near completion, although there is some work to do on the financing of the new stadium. It is possible that a formal offer could be made next week.

But Gillett – who is believed to be seeking access to the club's books to conduct his own due diligence ahead of making a formal offer – is in a good position to clinch a deal were the DIC takeover to collapse. He was one of the original bidders for the English club before it entered into exclusive talks with DIC.

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