Chinese tycoon Kenny Huang is launching a takeover bid financed by the Chinese government for Liverpool football club, the Times has reported.
China's overseas investment arm China Investment Corporation (CIC), which has a stake in Britain's Canary Wharf, is funding the bid for the debt-laden club.
The Royal Bank of Scotland, which is Liverpool's lender, reportedly forced the club's current American owners, Tom Hicks and George Gillett, into the sale. Martin Broughton, who was brought in as temporary chairman of the club in April, is hoping to complete the deal before the end of the month.
CIC, which has £209bn to spend, would end up with majority ownership of the club if the bid -- which values Liverpool at between £300m and £350m -- is successful.
However, CIC is understood to be willing to only repay RBS' and Barclays Capital's debt, without providing a return on their investment.
The other bidders in the race for the football club are the al-Kharafi family from Kuwait and the New York based Rhone Group - an American private equity fund.
The sale by Barcap, Barclays' investment banking arm, must be cleared by the Premier League.