Patriots owner Robert Kraft, appearing in London to promote the team's October game against the Buccaneers at Wembley Stadium, talked with reporters about a variety of topics, including his past interest in buying Liverpool of the English Premier League.
Of the comments reported by The Times of Britain, Kraft's feelings on the NFL's salary cap were especially notable.
Kraft pointed to the lack of a salary cap in the English Premier League as the primary reason he didn't follow through on purchasing Liverpool in 2005. He also detailed his thoughts on how the salary cap -- a significant issue tied to current labor negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement -- has helped the NFL thrive.
"If we’re playing by the same rules, then it’s not just about who has the most money. Green Bay, Kansas City or Arizona – who went to the Super Bowl last year – have to believe that they can win. In the Premier League you can see that there will always be a few teams that are dominant, and I don’t know that it’s fair to the passionate fans in the other cities.
“I would be interested in other teams in the Premier League, but Liverpool was a unique franchise, with a great following. The coach of my Major League Soccer team is Stevie Nichol [sic], who played up there. We sort of have stuff sent to us all the time, but I think, deep down, until there’s some sort of salary cap structure, I’m not sure it’s a great business deal.”
As quoted in The Times, Kraft also said that he believes an NFL team could one day be based in London, and he'd be interested in some type of ownership involvement, if possible.
"For the time zone and the language, a lot of things, [the NFL] could expand and eventually have a franchise here. I’m not making policy, I’m just telling you what my sense is as a businessman, and a few key people in the league agree with me. I realistically can see one that would be wildly successful. If there was a way I could own it through one of my kids, I’d like to do it."