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John Henry of Liverpool in Further Talks with Saudi Arabia PIF Over $3 Billion FSG Deal

Reports indicate that Liverpool's principal owner, John Henry, has traveled to the Caribbean for pivotal discussions following Fenway Sports Group's recent investment moves.

FSG significantly expanded their portfolio by leading an investment in the PGA Tour in January. This initiative, undertaken alongside other influential sports team owners such as Arthur Blank of the NFL's Atlanta Falcons and Wyc Grousbeck of the NBA's Boston Celtics, saw the creation of the Strategic Sports Group. This group injected an initial $1.5 billion into golf's premier tour, with potential for the investment to reach $3 billion.

The PGA Tour found itself in a state of flux as several prominent players, including major winners Phil Mickelson, Brooks Koepka, and most recently Jon Rahm, departed to join LIV, a venture funded by Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF), which also owns Newcastle United. Last June, the PGA, LIV, and the DP World Tour announced a merger deal, but as of now, negotiations have yet to yield a finalised agreement, despite missing a deadline set for December 31. In light of this, discussions have continued, with recent talks taking place in the Bahamas ahead of the Hero World Challenge, an event hosted by Tiger Woods.

Patrick Cantlay, a PGA player-director, confirmed after The Players Championship that discussions with PIF representatives were imminent. Cantlay emphasised the importance of gathering more information and representing the membership's interests in these talks, without specifying the participants.

However, recent developments suggest John Henry's involvement in these discussions. Henry was recently appointed to the board of directors for PGA Tour Enterprises, a new commercial venture involving SSG. Reports from Golf Monthly indicate that Henry traveled to the Bahamas for the latest round of talks. In February, it was also reported that Henry led a delegation to Saudi Arabia for similar discussions.

PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan expressed optimism about the negotiations with PIF, highlighting a shared vision to advance golf and address ongoing challenges within the sport. Monahan reiterated his belief in a positive outcome for the PGA Tour, its fans, and the sport as a whole, emphasising the importance of ongoing dialogue and collaboration.


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