16/09/2023 31comments  |  Jump to last

The Guardian's northwest correspondent, Andy Hunter, assesses Farhad Moshiri's "nearly ruinous" ownership of Everton following the news that the British Iranian businessman has agreed to sell his 94% stake in the club to 777 Partners.

"The last six years have invited criticism the club’s erratic owner has created a mausoleum instead [of the museum he insisted Everton couldnt become]. And yet, despite the decay, the debts and the descent of the nine‑time champions of England, there is more trepidation than jubilation among the fanbase at confirmation of Moshiri’s planned exit.

"777 Partners, Everton’s prospective new owner, must allay not only the concerns of the Premier League and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in its attempt to secure the club’s future."

» Read the full article at The Guardian

Reader Comments (31)

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Tony Everan
1 Posted 16/09/2023 at 15:09:48
Excellent, well written article on Moshiri’s reign and the proposed takeover by Andy Hunter of the Guardian . Well worth a read.

Also, the link to the Norwegian journalist is interesting and looks a bit closer at 777.

Michael Kenrick
2 Posted 16/09/2023 at 16:57:27
Sorry to disagree I couldn't see anything new, original or particularly 'excellent' in that, Tony. If anything it continues the recent ongoing Guardian trend of trashing Everton FC from whatever angle they can find.

And the Norwegian thing is the Josimar article that's been linked to already a number of times. Whether the misdemeanours of 777 Partners will be sufficient to stop this happening remains to be seen…

Tony Everan
3 Posted 16/09/2023 at 19:41:15
Michael, you set a high bar! I thought Hunter brought everything together very well here. I don't think he was looking for a scoop. This paragraph is a golden nugget and says it all in few words;

“The perfect partner to take the club forward,” was Bill Kenwright's description of Moshiri when the initial investment was announced. Moshiri was the perfect partner for Kenwright, not Everton, allowing the chairman to remain in the role to this day when his first act should have been to clear out the underperforming board he inherited. Everton's decline predates Moshiri. It just accelerated the decline”

Brendan McLaughlin
4 Posted 16/09/2023 at 19:58:26
Tony #3,

I can't help but feel if Moshiri had ditched Blue Bill when he first bought into the club things wouldn't have turned out that much differently.

If a more astute owner, prepared to spend more than 5% of his time on the club, had bought into Everton back then, even if they had retained Blue Bill as Chair, I think we'd be in a much, much better place.

Jeff Armstrong
5 Posted 16/09/2023 at 20:00:29
777 Partners tonight being investigated regarding their British Basketball investments.
Lyndon Lloyd
6 Posted 16/09/2023 at 20:25:08
I agree with Tony here. I'm not sure you can find much fault with Andy on anything he has written here (and there's nothing wrong with an article summarising the situation, particularly in a national daily that has non-Evertonian readers).

As the local beat journo on the football side of things, you really do have to separate him from the those "investigative journalists" that have been publishing the more inflammatory stuff about the club's financial issues for that paper in recent months.

I've always found Andy to be pretty much spot on with his assessment of EFC, both on the field and off it.

Paul Smith
7 Posted 16/09/2023 at 20:34:02
I read this yesterday and thought it countered the common narrative on here that the left wing Guardian has it in for poor old Everton – yes, I'm being passive aggressive here.

I think Tony Everan at 3 makes my point for me, it's a fair and balanced article with nothing new maybe but informative nonetheless.

Brent Stephens
8 Posted 16/09/2023 at 20:47:06
Agree, Tony. Balanced article.
Jim Lloyd
9 Posted 16/09/2023 at 20:51:29
I agree, Michael.

Andy Hunter has followed the trend of critical/derogatory articles on EFC.

Michael Kenrick
10 Posted 16/09/2023 at 21:56:59
It's interesting to me that long-term journalists like Hunter and McNulty are now finally seeing the truth of Everton Board incompetence – while still notably isolating Kenwright and his cronies from any real or meaningful criticism.

The closest Hunter comes is talking about the "underperforming board he [Moshiri] inherited". But hang on a minute — that was 7½ years ago! And this local beat journo on the football side of things only now has the balls to sort of call a spade a spade?

But then we've had to suffer a sickening defence of the utterly useless CEO who presided over this almighty clusterfuck, so I guess I shouldn't be too surprised.

Lyndon Lloyd
11 Posted 16/09/2023 at 21:58:36
Jim (9): Is he wrong on any point, though? It's critical because the stadium aside, Moshiri's reign has been "near ruinous" as he says. It's hardly derogatory, though, is it? The truth hurts...
Tony Abrahams
12 Posted 16/09/2023 at 22:23:12
Brendan @4,

If a more astute person would have bought Everton, then even if he had retained Blue Bill as chair, then I think we would have been in a much, much better place!!

I'm scratching my head and smiling at that cracker mate, because I'm certain a more astute person, would have simply just fucked Blue Bill right off.

I personally think the last sentence of Hunter's article is the most telling and explains perfectly why Farhad was the exact type of man that Mr Kenwright had been waiting donkey's years for, imo.

Derek Thomas
13 Posted 16/09/2023 at 22:33:31
Truth telling summation for the 'neutral' reader or yet another typical rs media anti-Everton hatchet job. The thing is, what took them so long to wake up to the facts?

And just for added seasoning, there's Richard Keys's interview with Moyes (if I remember correctly, this was Moyes before he got his mojo back) who stated he was over in Germany with Moshiri and a hinted at 'other' to sign his contract to return as Manager, then Ancelotti got the sack and it fizzled out.

Would that have changed anything – who knows? I do know one thing though: Moyes wouldn't have been tapped up by Real Madrid, so thus probably no eventual Benitez.

But no doubt Dumb and Dumber would have still found ways to fuck it up.

Lyndon Lloyd
14 Posted 17/09/2023 at 00:39:35
Michael (10), when it comes down to it, "Kenwright and his cronies" were certainly complicit/partly culpable in our demise but they were allowed to remain in place and perpetuate their ineffective tenures by Moshiri for those 7½ years. He could – and should – have dispensed with them a long time ago but either he was weak, wanted a criticism-attracting shield or he genuinely believed in the value of their Evertonian roots and their abilities.

Whichever it was, it doesn't reflect well on him, as majority shareholder, owner and chief decision-maker (if, indeed, he was and it wasn't our man in Germany/the Med the whole time), well at all and simply reinforces the arguments against him.

I'd also say that the likes of Hunter and McNulty have been writing critical stuff like this for a long time now; certainly since the Benitez debacle which is when the writing was very clearly on the wall for anyone still in doubt that Moshiri was making a mess of things. They haven't suddenly come to a realisation but the evidence against Moshiri, with two scrapes with relegation in a row, has simply mounted.

Tony Abrahams
15 Posted 17/09/2023 at 10:32:26
So you are definitely 100% not having it that there was some kind of contract that allowed Bill Kenwright to remain at the club as the chairman, Lyndon?

I've heard Moshiri can be a bit dolly, which is perfect for someone who is looking for a patsy, but I don't believe for one minute that the silent man would be so stupid… but again it's just speculation – the Everton Way.

Brendan McLaughlin
16 Posted 17/09/2023 at 13:57:12
Tony #12

"I'm certain a more astute person would have simply just fucked Blue Bill right off."

I'm more in the "death and taxes" are the only two certainties in life. There probably are others but I really don't see "astute people fucking off Blue Bill" being added to the list.

Dave Lynch
17 Posted 17/09/2023 at 14:18:58
Kenwright waited years for Moshiri to surface. The fat bastard hand-picked him to service his own needs and ego, the man is a slimeball of the highest level.

Moshiri delivered on the money side of things, Kenwright delivered nothing but chaos and instability, he and he alone is responsible for our current predicament.

He put people on the board who would service his every whim and feed his big fat ego, I genuinely dislike the man... he's a liar a narcissist and a manipulator.

Sorry... had to get that off my chest.

Barry Rathbone
18 Posted 17/09/2023 at 15:04:08
Journos seldom go out on a limb to criticise when all about them are on the bandwagon especially in football were bullets are sent through the post when Neanderthals take umbrage.

Moshiri's bandwagon was untouchable for years; people were conned by a spending plan that involved paying out loads of middle-of-the-road fees (except Gylfi) resulting in loads of middle-of-the-road players.

They were distracted by the ill-considered new stadium build, taken in by the bucket load. You still see "He got us a new stadium, though" despite the crippling impact it will have financially.

Journos don't go against a populist grain but better late than never, I suppose.

Tony Abrahams
19 Posted 17/09/2023 at 15:22:54
I genuinely couldn't envisage any astute person wishing to keep Bill Kenwright involved, Brendan, but if you could tell me a few reasons why this would be advantageous to any clever or serious businessman, then I'd love to hear your thoughts, mate.

I'm absolutely convinced that Bill Kenwright would only sell Everton to “anyone” who would allow him to stay involved and he has definitely been involved in helping to contribute to the horrible mess that Everton currently find themselves in.

If Moshiri would have had more time for Everton, it would have surely meant that his Chairman wouldn't have had to get himself involved in so many things? I'm certain this is a very logical question, but I'm not certain how much Bill was really left to get involved in, although I'm absolutely certain that a CEO who was not qualified for the role, would have been Blue Bill's🤮 choice?

Stephen Davies
20 Posted 17/09/2023 at 15:40:51
This is what EFC are getting into.
Dave Abrahams
21 Posted 17/09/2023 at 15:59:10
Lyndon ( 14) Yes of course Moshiri allowed the chairman and his mostly chosen boardroom to remain in place for the last seven years but if Kenwright loved the club, as he claims, why did he not ask Moshiri to have a look at some of the decisions he was making, why didn’t he sit him down and give him some sensible advice instead of joining in with this reckless spending.

Both of them have made bad decisions, I think Moshiri put too much trust in Kenwright’s ability to run the club, Wyeness and Harris had seen enough of that and got out, Harris after a matter of weeks, Wyeness had a longer spell and left with a cheque after threatening to blow the gaff on them.

The media never seemed to think Kenwright was the wrong owner and chairman, only now are some of them having a go at him but none of them are telling the way he used Everton to feather his own nest and although his days at Everton look like they are coming to an end he is still here, saying nothing publically, just rumours of his very poor health which raises the question of why he is still in the position he is in.

Lyndon Lloyd
22 Posted 17/09/2023 at 16:17:43
Dave: “but if Kenwright loved the club, as he claims, why did he not ask Moshiri to have a look at some of the decisions he was making, why didn’t he sit him down and give him some sensible advice instead of joining in with this reckless spending

I’d love to know the extent to which he did. They must have had differences of opinion along the way (Kenwright’s silence when Benitez was appointed and reports of a split boardroom when Lampard was chosen suggest they did but you’d imagine that the man putting £750m into the club got the final say.

Brendan McLaughlin
23 Posted 17/09/2023 at 21:28:39
Tony #19,

"I genuinely couldn't envisage any astute person wishing to keep Bill Kenwright involved, Brendan, but if you could tell me a few reasons why this would be advantageous to any clever or serious businessman, then I'd love to hear your thoughts, mate."

I've never suggested that keeping Blue Bill would be advantageous for anyone, never mind clever or serious businessmen... so why exactly are you asking me to speculate on that?

Tony Abrahams
24 Posted 17/09/2023 at 21:51:52
I know you never Brendan. You did say that if a more astute fella than Moshiri, could have kept Blue Bill on and spent a bit more time on the club, we would have been in a much, much better place, though. I replied that I was certain a more astute fella would have simply fucked Blue Bill off, but you then said you wasn’t certain that an astute person would have added this to his list.

Why do you think an astute person might not have added getting rid of Blue Bill to his list then Brendan? What reasons do you think a more astute person might have for keeping Bill Kenwright, at Everton?

Dave Abrahams
25 Posted 17/09/2023 at 21:52:05
Lyndon (22), Yes that makes sense, you would imagine they would have had some discussions with the money man getting the final word or it might have been that Moshiri didn’t have a clue and Kenwright didn’t have any sensible advice to offer, especially about running a multi million pound football club!!
Brendan McLaughlin
26 Posted 17/09/2023 at 22:25:50
Again Tony #24

"You did say that if a more astute fella than Moshiri, could have kept Blue Bill on and spent a bit more time on the club, we would have been in a much, much better place, "

"but you then said you wasn’t certain that an astute person would have added this to his list."

Didn't say, mean or infer any of that.

If you feel I did...copy and paste what I actually said...don't inaccurately paraphrase!

Tony Abrahams
27 Posted 18/09/2023 at 07:20:20
I'm “certain” you once told me you come on this thread for a bit of humour, Brendan, but maybe it's not always to your taste.

It took Bill Kenwright a very long time to get “investment” which makes me wonder how many astute people fucked him off when they saw his actual terms?

Jerome Shields
28 Posted 20/09/2023 at 23:57:44
Trying to get to the crux of the Moshiri - Kenwright relationship is difficult. Moshiri even recently apparently kept him on, but I doubt the validity of Kenwright going anyway.

Kenwright right from the start, even in the Johnson era. was ruinous for Everton. Brendan is right: Moshiri would have been better without him, but I doubt he would have got a foothold in Everton if Kenwright had thought he would have had to go.

Kenwright just was allowed to build up a culture around himself, which preserved his position and made him a load of money. Everton FC as a football club was a secondary consideration.

Even with 777 Partners, Kenwright has not sold his shares. I will only believe he is gone when I see a stake through his heart.

Brendan McLaughlin
29 Posted 21/09/2023 at 22:28:14
Apologies Tony #27

I did tell you that and kudos for remembering. I did not get the humour in your response...then very few get mine (no sarcastic response required}..but not an excuse. Sorry mate.

Loved Jerome's post...

As for Blue Bill knocking back offers...it's a bit like your your alternative buyers in the present day...

Not trying to be controversial

Jim Lloyd
30 Posted 22/09/2023 at 10:38:52
Lyndon, (11) A number of Guardian articles that I read, not necessarily by Andy Hunter, gave me the impression of being derogatory to Everton and Evertonians.

This last article is "not wrong on any point" its what he leaves out that made me write my post.

If I remember right He originally bought Kenwright's shares and a fellow directors shares to give him 49% of EFC shares, leaving Kenwright £20 odd million and Kenwright glowingly bleating about "Didn't I tell you I'd get you a Billionaire?" after refusing Sheik Mansour's offer to buy the club. That in my opinion, along with his other decisions began the ruination of our club.

I could be wrong in my reading of Hunter's article, but it mentions nothing of Kenwright's disastrous reign of our club. Hunter appears to me, to be putting the blame for the demise of our club on Moshiri, when I believe it's 90% Kenwright's fault for where we are now for getting Mioshiri in, in the first place, and 10% Moshiri's for wanting to get out of this madhouse.

Tony Abrahams
31 Posted 27/09/2023 at 10:43:46
Fair enough Brendan, if it is just pure speculation what you are insinuating!

I know you always lean towards Blue Bill, (surely the name is a giveaway,) Brendan, but because you have never struck me as being a naive person, it’s something I can’t get my head around, even if you loved Jerome’s post.

777 are in the driving seat, but something is amiss and not necessarily with the people who have allegedly just given Everton, a £20 million loan.

Why do people take out loans? Usually because they need money. How many loans did Blue Bill take out during his very unsuccessful reign at Everton? Definitely enough to make himself a small fortune even though nobody wanted to buy the blues.

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