In a week where football has dominated the headlines for all the wrong reasons, the distance between Liverpool and Boston seems further than ever before.

I spoke with two Boston based Liverpool supporters from the LFC Boston Supporter’s Club to discuss all things the European Super League and Fenway Sports Group.

The relationship between the cities of Liverpool and Boston have been close ever since FSG took the reins at Anfield. However this week, they seem further apart than ever.

Despite Liverpool’s U-turn away from the proposed European Super League, there is a strong resentment towards the American owners. The reaction from supporters, players and Jurgen Klopp was unanimous in disapproval for the European Super League.

John W Henry’s message to Liverpool supporters has not been well received by supporters, despite apologising for the clubs involvement in the proposal.

There has been a string of mistakes that FSG have made at Anfield, despite on field successes. Ticket prices, trademarking and furloughing staff during the coronavirus pandemic have produced negative headlines for FSG.

The European Super League – A Boston perspective

I spoke to two Boston based Liverpool fans – Omar and Emmanuel, from Boston to discuss all things the European Super League and Fenway Sports Group.

Omar stated: “I have seen that the American soccer market have thought of the ESL as a greedy attempted coup”.

He continued: “I have not met anyone who is a fan of the idea.”

Omar pinpointed that he would like to see the Bundesliga ownership model of 50+1 rule, that allows for fans to be the custodians of their football club.

“I love the German model”, he said.

“The ticket prices were cheaper, beer was cheaper, it is the working class game and they care about supporters. The reason the German teams would not touch the Super League is because the executives are afraid of the supporter reaction. They are not just supporters, they are part of the decision making.”


“The problem with John Henry, The Glazers (at Manchester United), Stan Kroenke (Arsenal), as well as UK venture capitalists such as Mike Ashley at Newcastle and David Gold and Sullivan at West Ham United, is that they are so far removed from the working class supporter, they don’t see what the supporter see’s.”

Despite the obvious ownership issues surrounding English football, that have come to the fore this week, Omar felt that it would be unlikely that there would be UK government interference in football, despite PM Boris Johnson’s claims this week that they would investigate ownership models in football.

Omar and Emmanuel were in complete agreement with Liverpool fans frustrations with Fenway Sports Group.

FSG and the Boston Red Sox

“I fear that joining the ESL was the straw that broke the camel’s back (for FSG), as I feel that we can no longer trust them at all”, Omar stated.

The frustrations that Liverpool fans with FSG is echoed in the States.

Omar said: “I believe fans having a voice, not just on the matter of the Super League. But also for kick off times, racism and inclusion in the game, ticket prices, will lead to far better changes in the game.”

Emmanuel highlighted the parallel’s between FSG’s ownership of the Boston Red Sox and Liverpool FC.

The Red Sox have been on a decline since they won the World Series in 2018. The trade of star man Mookie Betts to the LA Dodger’s was the catalyst to a poor 2019 campaign, where they failed to qualify for the play offs.

Similarly to Liverpool, there are local frustrations with ticket prices at Fenway Park, the highest average ticket price in Major League Baseball. 

Further frustrations with the cost of beer at Fenway Park were mentioned.

The parallel’s between Boston and Liverpool are evident. Liverpool have struggled since winning their first Premier League title in 30 years.

Injuries have blighted the reds campaign.

The Story of FSG and Liverpool

In October 2010, Fenway Sports Group became the principle owners of Liverpool FC following a High Court battle.

John W Henry became the clubs principal owner.


Fenway Sports Group made their way as the principle owners of the Boston Red Sox Baseball franchise. The group took the Red Sox from the abys to the top of baseball after acquiring them in 2002.

There was a degree of scepticism towards the new ownership at Anfield, following George Gillett and Tom Hicks’ tenure of terror.

FSG have adopted a ‘Moneyball’ approach to the running of Liverpool Football Club with huge success. Statistics drive player signings and contracts, led by Michael Edwards.

With FSG at the helm, the club have won their sixth Champions League in 2019, as well as the Red’s first Premier League crown for 30 years in 2020.

Boston and Liverpool as cities are intrinsically similar. Both are port cities, with a unique accent and a close knit community. Sport dominates both cities.

Boston is America’s main sporting city. It’s centre piece – Fenway Park. America’s most loved ballpark has been the home of the Red Sox since 1912. Under FSG, the ballpark went under major construction changes to increase it’s capacity and commercial output, similarly to Anfield.

Fenway Sports Group have undoubtedly grown the support of Liverpool in the States, but nowhere is this more evident than in John Henry’s home of Boston. Liverpool have played friendly matches all over the States and have even played at the Yankee Stadium in New York, as well as Fenway Park in Boston.

What next for FSG?

Despite taking two incredibly traditional clubs that are intertwined with the local community from dark depths to the top of the world, Fenway Sports Group are still not viewed in an entirely positive light on both sides of the pond.

The lack of consultation with the staff and supporters at Anfield this week has left a sour taste in the mouth for every Red around the world.

Whether FSG can ever recover their reputation in the UK remains to be seen. However, with the money the company are making from Liverpool, it is highly unlikely that the fan pressure will force them to sell.

John Henry’s video apology will not have healed the wounds caused this week.

Former Reds defender Jamie Carragher had this to say on FSG and John Henry.