Belfast Telegraph

Ayre calm about Liverpool finances

Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre believes the club's vast global appeal gives them the financial muscle to absorb revenue lost from missing out on European football.

This season is the first since 1999/2000 that the Reds have not competed on the continent and the second in succession they have not been involved in the Champions League, but Ayre believes the "landmark" new six-year kit deal, reported to be worth a staggering £150million, just signed with United States-based company Warrior is telling.

He told Press Association Sport: "Performance on the pitch definitely affects business but the difference with truly big football clubs, globally-recognised clubs, is we have sustainable revenue whether we are playing in the Champions League, Europa League or not."

He added: "That can't go on forever but what is important is that we don't fall apart as a business and we don't fall apart when we don't have a year playing European football.

"Likewise, we don't fall apart as a brand because of that either. This club has been around for 120 years and for that reason it has a fan base across the world and we sell huge amounts of merchandise.

"Our fans don't desert us because we are not playing European football, they are always there rain or shine and that is what makes us a great club and attractive to someone like Warrior in this case."

In the current climate of austerity to secure such a huge new kit deal - current manufacturers adidas claimed Liverpool were asking too high a price - is testament to the pull of the Premier League and Liverpool in particular.

"Particularly at this time it says a couple of things," added Ayre.

"Over the last couple of years one of the things we have been focused on is producing revenue relevant to the size and power of this club.

"We have a fantastic shirt sponsorship deal with Standard Chartered and this is another step. When everyone is focused on financial fair play the importance of solid and quality revenues is even more essential."


From Belfast Telegraph