Soon there will be no lawyers left in the City who are not embroiled in the interminable struggle for control of a once-successful football team.
Multi-billion pound M&A deals will be shelved through a lack of resources; entire departments will be seconded to Merseyside; and sons will ask fathers what it was like before every single partner in the Square Mile was sucked into the black hole that is the all-devouring saga of the Liverpool ownership battle.
First, there was just Shearman & Sterling, Weil Gotshal and Slaughter and May strutting their stuff as the deal looked to be no different from any bid for any distressed asset.Now, as the action moves to the High Court, every firm in the country wants a piece of the pie (see story).
Two new bidders have come along, including the hedge fund that already owns a 50 per cent stake in the club. Macfarlanes is advising one – a Singapore consortium backed by multi-billionaire Peter Lim – and Freshfields the other in the shape of US investor Mill Financial.
Freshfields also has a role advising RBS, whose £237m loan to the current owners is due to be repaid by the end of the week. If it’s not, the bank will send in the heavies, in the form of the Premier League threatening to break some legs (or, more realistically, impose a nine-point penalty).
Following this so far? Good. And we haven’t even begun to tell you about the eloquence of barristers drafted in to do the bidding of the potential Yankee overlords.
Unlike most Liverpool players this season, this one is set to run and run…