Report: US Justice Department To Review PGA Tour-LIV Golf Merger Plans

Reports state that antitrust concerns will be reviewed surrounding the shock merger plans between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf

PGA Tour chief Jay Monahan and PIF boss Yasir Al-Rumayyan
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The blockbuster merger between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf is reportedly being reviewed by the US Justice Department amid concerns about the validity of the move.

After a year of arguing and lawsuits flying around between them, the two factions shocked the world by announcing they were joining forces.

PGA Tour chief Jay Monahan appeared alongside Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) boss Yasir Al-Rumayyan to announce the deal on American TV - revealing they would be forming a new for-profit LLC.

However, news of this stunning and unlikely coming together has raised antitrust concerns and will be looked into by the authorities.

The US Justice Department is already investigating the PGA Tour and their fight with LIV Golf as part of legal proceedings that will now be ended by the new deal.

But now, Bloomberg is reporting that the Justice Department will also now review this most incredible turn of events to see if the move can actually proceed.

Monahan has already had a difficult time in the immediate aftermath of the announcement - facing around 80 angry PGA Tour players at a meeting ahead of the Canadian Open.

Some PGA Tour players called for Monahan to resign over the proposal, which they see as some huge backtracking from his previous comments.

Player who turned down millions from LIV Golf to stay loyal to the PGA Tour also feel betrayed by the move, with still plenty of question to be answered about where golf will go from here.

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The deal will see the PIF pump money into the new joint golfing entity, with the PGA Tour continuing but likely with the Saudi venture as a prominent sponsor.

Al-Rumayyan will be chairman of the as-yet unnamed company, with Monahan being installed as the chief executive officer.

It's unsure just what role LIV Golf will play in golf's new future, with Monahan himself set to undergo a thorough review of it and how team golf can be used to benefit the PGA Tour.

One of the main drivers behind the two sides coming together was to put an end to all the legal proceedings that have been ongoing for a year as the fought it out for the future of golf.

It now seems, however, that legal matters may now intervene in their plans to come together as one - and the US Justice Department may yet have the final say on whether this merger can even go ahead.

Paul Higham

Paul Higham is a sports journalist with over 20 years of experience in covering most major sporting events for both Sky Sports and BBC Sport. He is currently freelance and covers the golf majors on the BBC Sport website.  Highlights over the years include covering that epic Monday finish in the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor and watching Rory McIlroy produce one of the most dominant Major wins at the 2011 US Open at Congressional. He also writes betting previews and still feels strangely proud of backing Danny Willett when he won the Masters in 2016 - Willett also praised his putting stroke during a media event before the Open at Hoylake. Favourite interviews he's conducted have been with McIlroy, Paul McGinley, Thomas Bjorn, Rickie Fowler and the enigma that is Victor Dubuisson. A big fan of watching any golf from any tour, sadly he spends more time writing about golf than playing these days with two young children, and as a big fair weather golfer claims playing in shorts is worth at least five shots. Being from Liverpool he loves the likes of Hoylake, Birkdale and the stretch of tracks along England's Golf Coast, but would say his favourite courses played are Kingsbarns and Portrush.