FSG’s eye for investment in ‘best interest’ of Liverpool, insists Lijnders

Pep Lijnders says Fenway Sports Group is acting in Liverpool’s best interest by seeking new investors for the club, with the assistant manager insisting Jürgen Klopp’s team are not distracted by the news.

On Monday the Boston-based company said Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley had been instructed to attract fresh investment. Lijnders, speaking before Wednesday’s Carabao Cup tie with Derby, views the move as positive.

“I always know the owners act in the best interests of the club and they always did,” he said. “I believe they always tried at least. This relationship was very important for us [him and Klopp]. Everybody who saw us in the last years, who realised who we are as a club, realised we have a strong relationship with the owners. They are good owners and I will explain a few reasons why.

“First one, [in April] they tied down one of the best managers in the world for seven-plus years. That says a lot. Second, they tied down the best players in the squad. The difference between top European or world clubs and sub-top is that the latter have to sell their best players. We tied down – [for example] Mo Salah’s contract.

“And then what is even more important, we have a stable academy. They invested in the academy, they invested in where we are sitting now – it’s one of the best training grounds in world football and it’s our new home. Then the main stand [at Anfield and] the new stand. We won a lot of cups: international and national prizes. They are acting in the best interests for this club to take it further.”

Lijnders insisted focus remained. “The statement was very clear,” he said. “How did it distract us? This is what I like about our club. We are so focused. There was a small discussion between Jürgen and me but from that moment on we started focusing [on] a big game coming up.”

Lijnders was asked whether his understanding was that new investors rather than new owners were being sought. “The statement was clear,” he said. “It’s nothing new for a club to try and find investors. They are trying to take the club forward. We knew before [the statement was released], of course. We knew about the statement but nothing more than you guys [reporters] knew.”

When Lijnders and Klopp signed their news deals it was on the understanding FSG would remain owner for the foreseeable future. “Of course but we are not naive to think that things [can’t] change in football,” he said.