(Bloomberg) -- US investment firm MSP Sports Capital is considering a potential investment in England’s Everton Football Club, people with knowledge of the matter said. 

MSP has held preliminary discussions about buying a stake in Everton, which is controlled by businessman Farhad Moshiri, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private.

Everton, which is building a new stadium in Liverpool, is in danger of dropping out of the lucrative Premier League. It currently ranks second-to-last in the standings, with three teams set for demotion at the end of the season in May.

A transaction would add to a string of global deals by MSP, which agreed in October to buy ESPN’s majority holding in the X Games extreme sports competition. It also has stakes in McLaren Racing and several European football clubs, including G.D. Estoril Praia in Portugal and Spain’s AD Alcorcon. 

MSP was founded by former sports agent Jeff Moorad and businessman Jahm Najafi, who’s a minority investor in the Phoenix Suns basketball team. Deliberations are at an early stage, and there’s no certainty they will lead to a deal, the people said. 

The club could also attract interest from other investors, according to the people. Representatives for MSP, Everton and Moshiri declined to comment. 

Moshiri has invested heavily in the team since buying control in 2016, but his efforts haven’t been rewarded on the pitch. The team hasn’t won a major trophy since winning the FA Cup in 1995 and its current run of poor form led to the sacking of manager Frank Lampard this week. 

In an interview with the chair of Everton’s fan advisory board, Moshiri said he’s been talking to quality investors who can “bridge a gap on the stadium” and help bring in more talent. A lot of specialist sport investors have a “pool of knowledge” that can be secured for Everton, Moshiri said in a video of his remarks posted on the team’s website this week. 

“We are close to having a deal done,” he said. “It’s not selling the club at all. It’s just bringing more expertise in terms of global sponsorship, in terms of commercial development.”

(Updates with detail on manager sacking in seventh paragraph.)

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