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Liverpool and Arsenal set for showdown

50-50 Challenge
By ESPN Staff

Rafa unconcerned by investors origins

Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez has no problem with foreign investors coming into the English game - as long as they are 'nice people'.

With the Anfield club the subject of speculation over potential new owners from abroad, Benitez says he is more concerned about motives than nationalities.

Liverpool are believed to be involved in discussions with two main groups who are interested in buying into the club.

Chief executive Rick Parry and chairman David Moores have held talks with American sporting entrepreneur George Gillett and Dubai International Capital.

Gillett is the owner of the Montreal Canadians ice hockey club and formerly owned the Harlem Globetrotters.

Moores is believed to be considering selling his majority holding in a deal that could eventually cost £500m, including 200m for the new stadium in Stanley Park.

Benitez, aware of the growing concern over Premiership clubs falling into the hands of foreign owners - West Ham being the most recent this week - said: 'The key is not whether it is foreign investment, only that it is by nice people who are thinking about the sport and the game with positive ideas.

'It is not where you are from, only what are your ideas. If people concerned are only getting involved for business reasons, it is not always the best situation.

'But if you are thinking about the game, about the club, and are thinking about improving the club and the team and to give them the possibility to win more trophies, then it is okay.

'It is not a problem over whether it is a foreign investor or a local one, just that they want to do the right things.

'Liverpool is a very famous club and I am sure there are people watching us. Everybody knows us.

'Certainly, when I was working in Spain, everybody respected Liverpool as a great club that won many trophies.

'Wherever you are from, you can be a Liverpool supporter.'