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50-50 Challenge: Real Madrid vs. Barcelona

El Clasico 1 day ago
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By ESPN Staff
Nov 30, 2007

Parry dismisses Hicks reports

Liverpool chief executive Rick Parry has dismissed claims that co-owner Tom Hicks might be willing to sell his stake in the club as 'complete rubbish'.

Parry was moved to respond after a report this morning suggested Hicks -- who only took over the club along with fellow American George Gillett nine months ago -- was ready to offload his holding in the wake of his row with manager Rafael Benitez.

'I have seen the story, and as far as I am aware it is complete rubbish,' Parry said. Sources close to Hicks said earlier today he was made aware of speculation growing about a rift with Gillett, and suggestions that he would be selling up, several days ago.

It is believed that in conversations earlier this week Hicks was angered by the suggestions and denied them to key figures at Anfield.

Hicks and Gillett are believed to be on the brink of sealing finances to build their revamped £400million new stadium in Stanley Park.

In the current tough financial market that has taken them some time and they have found world banks reluctant to loan cash for such a major scheme.

And in the midst of this, the row with boss Benitez over transfer policy has also sprung up, with the prospect at one stage that the Spaniard's public insubordination could cost him his job.

But in recent days that conflict has been smoothed over, thanks largely to a lengthy meeting between Parry and Benitez ahead of Wednesday's 4-1 Champions League win over Porto.

It was around this time, it is understood, that Hicks made it clear that speculation about him selling up was not true.