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Everton set for takeover by former Arsenal shareholder

Farhad Moshiri has moved ahead of other bidders in the battle for ownership at Goodison Park.

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Former Arsenal shareholder Farhad Moshiri is set to buy Everton, reports The Telegraph.

Reports on Friday, from the Daily Mail specifically, had revealed that the Blues were set to be bought by a mysterious Middle Eastern consortium after talks with Bill Kenwright.

That came as something of a surprise, after it had been thought that they were duo to sell to an American consortium led by John Jay Moores. Evertonian and former broadcaster Elton Welsby had earlier reported that the proposed takeover by the American investors group had been called off.

And it now transpires that former Arsenal shareholder Moshiri has manoeuvred himself into position to by the club ahead of the Americans. At present it is unknown whether he is operating on his own or has formed a group to buy the club, but a deal could be agreed as early as Tuesday. Moshiri is Iranian by birth, but currently resides in the UK. A British passport holder, he is believed to be worth £2bn.

It is not currently clear if he is the "Middle Easterner" referred to by multiple press outlets. The source cited in those reports are from within the club and said that the situation was too sensitive at this stage to reveal any names.

That has been confirmed by BBC Sport's Phil McNulty, who tweeted as much on Saturday morning.

Moshiri recently sold his stake in the Gunners to their second largest shareholder Alisher Usmanov, with the money from that sale allowing him to take ownership at Goodison Park.

He had grown frustrated with his lack of influence for his money at the Emirates, with his 30.04% not enough to earn him a place on the Gunners board.

According to the report from The Telegraph, Moshiri's willingness to allow current chairman Kenwright to remain in a position of power gives him an advantage over his rival bidders at present.

This puts yet another twist in the now long-running saga of the Everton takeover with multiple proposed owners being linked with the club but nothing concrete observed as yet.