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Usmanov deal reports played down once more

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Presence of new advertising hoardings at Goodison were related to the existing deal

Alisher Usmanov Visits The Turner Bequest Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images

Barely a month goes by without fresh rumours linking Alisher Usmanov with Everton.

The Russian-Uzbek business magnate is a close business partner of Farhad Moshiri and has openly spoken about his desire to ‘support’ Moshiri in his stewardship of the Toffees.

Some fans translated that as taking over, or at least formally buying into the club, but those reports have consistently been denied.

There was fresh excitement on Saturday when eager-eyed Blues spotted advertising hoardings emblazoned with ‘MegaFon’, of which Usmanov owns more than 50%.

It raised hopes that a fresh deal had been struck with the 65-year-old - but sadly that’s not the case.

The Liverpool Echo did some digging and found out that the hoardings were simply part of the existing deal agreed with USM Holdings last year.

Usmanov and Moshiri are major shareholders in USM, who signed a five-year naming rights deal for Finch Farm in January 2017.

The Echo reports that the deal also includes marketing rights, player backdrops and matchday advertising at Goodison, explaining the presence of MegaFon on Saturday.

So there you have it. Usmanov’s yacht will not be pitching up on the banks of the Mersey anytime soon.