DIC aim to secure Liverpool takeover before March

Dubai Investment Capital are closing in on a fresh Liverpool takeover bid - which could be settled inside a fortnight.

DIC are closing in on American George Gillett's 50 per cent stake in the club.

They are also confident they can strike a deal with Gillett's Yank partner Tom Hicks for his 50 per cent - and that could spell the end for boss Rafa Benitez.

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If DIC finally seize control, Benitez will come under intense pressure to finish in the Premier League's top four and clinch a Champions League place for next season.

A source told The Sun: "The Dubai investors are not convinced Benitez is the right man for Liverpool.

"They have been far from impressed by his very public rows with the current owners and even less impressed with the way Liverpool are struggling for consistency in the Premier League. Like all foreign owners, they crave Champions League football, for financial and emotional reasons. If Liverpool failed to qualify for next season's tournament, they would regard it as catastrophic."

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