By George Overhill

19th Sep, 2023 | 12:10pm

Everton takeover news: Half-billion 'elephant in the room' issue mooted after Farhad Moshiri sale 'u-turn' - Kieran Maguire

Farhad Moshiri’s “big u-turn” into selling Everton, when he had previously claimed he only wanted minority investment, is unlikely to get him the price he hopes for from the potential takeover by 777 Partners, according to Kieran Maguire.

The University of Liverpool finance expert said on the Price of Football podcast on 18 September that he had heard mooted figures ranging from £1 all the way up to £500million for the Toffees owner to handover his 94% share to the American firm.

But the “elephant in the room” of the club’s existing debts raises the prospect of £200m needed to continue building the stadium and £300m more if current loans are recalled, so with the club struggling on the pitch Maguire would expect the sale price to end up being at the lower end of the scale if it goes through amid an “awful lot of baggage” involved.

Maguire said (10m): “I’ve seen as little as £1 to buy the club, up to £500m, as far as the outgoing to Farhad Moshiri, so that’s quite significant.”

When asked what he thought the value was he added (14m 30s): “Well, Newcastle United with a 50,000 capacity stadium which was already there was sold for £300m less than two years ago.

“Whoever acquires Everton will have to pay for the remainder of the stadium, so that’s a significant cost. If the loans are going to roll over they are going to have to repay those as well.

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“Both Rights and Media Funding Ltd and MSP Sports Capital are likely to have a change of control clause… so they could demand immediate repayment, so we’re probably talking the thick end of £300m.

“So you’ve got the stadium which is going to cost you probably another couple of hundred million [to finish], £300m of loans you’re going to have to deal with, you’re half a billion pounds out already.

“It’s a football club that’s been under-invested as far as the playing staff are concerned… and there’s an ongoing investigation into Everton’s finances from the Premier League with regards to financial fair play compliance and we don’t know what they outcome of that’s going to be.

“Under those circumstances I wouldn’t be willing to pay a large amount of money… there are huge uncertainties here… therefore I would be tempted to go towards the lower end of the spectrum.”


It doesn’t sound like Moshiri is in line to receive the fee that he surely wants for the club, even after plowing £750m into it over the years.

But if the money that goes directly to him is heavily discounted based on his supposed intent to get out as quickly as possible now it still looks like being an expensive proposition for 777 Partners or any alternative.

Whether it goes ahead based on the deal with the American firm that was announced last Friday (15 September) depends on many different parties, both in terms of regulators and current stakeholders, so the ultimate result seems some way off.

And after it was reported that the minority investment deal with MSP Sports Capital fell through based on the opposition from Rights and Media Funding Ltd [The Athletic, 23 August] the equation has surely only got more complicated since then.

A full takeover with both those companies now creditors is going to cost, so amid doubts over their ability to do so it is up to 777 Partners to come up with the money to close this deal.

For now there appears to be some way to go before any real clarity emerges on who will be in charge of the club come the end of the season and beyond.

In other Everton news, Dyche can’t be sacked while the issue is ongoing because nobody at the club has the authority.