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Bury Expelled From EFL as Bolton Have 14 Days to Complete Takeover
Tuesday, 27th Aug 2019 23:42

Bury’s expulsion from the EFL was confirmed late this evening after their proposed takeover collapsed this afternoon prior to today's 5pm deadline, while Bolton Wanderers have been given another 14 days in which to find a resolution to their takeover’s ongoing impasse.

An EFL statement on the expulsion of Bury, the first club to be expelled since Maidstone's liquidation in 1992, reads: “Despite repeated requests to its owner Mr [Steve] Dale over a sustained period of time, the necessary evidence in respect of how the club would meet its financial commitments, has simply not been provided and, as a result, attentions turned to securing new ownership at the club.

“At its meeting on 24th August 2019, the board agreed a short extension to 5pm today (Tuesday 27th August) to enable Mr Dale and the club to explore the possibility of a proposed sale with C&N Sporting Risk Limited, with Mr Dale having accepted their offer.

"Following due diligence, C&N Sporting Risk Limited opted not to pursue its interest.

“Therefore, having fully considered all available options, including a number of late expressions of interest provided to the EFL, the EFL board has unanimously determined with enormous regret that Bury’s membership be withdrawn.

“The EFL board had maintained that there could be no further suspensions to the fixture list and that these ongoing concerns and the integrity of the competition were a significant factor in the decision.”

Debbie Jevans CBE, the EFL’s executive chair, said: “Today is undoubtedly one of the darkest days in the League’s recent history. The EFL has worked determinedly and tirelessly to avoid this outcome and it is with a heavy heart that this situation has been forced upon us.

“The EFL has to place the integrity of our competitions at the heart of every decision we make, and we simply cannot allow this unacceptable situation to continue or countenance the prospect of postponing further fixtures.

“I understand this will be a deeply upsetting and devastating time for Bury’s players, staff, supporters and the wider community. There is no doubt today’s news will be felt across the entire football family.

“No one wanted to be in this position but following repeated missed deadlines, the suspension of five League fixtures, in addition to not receiving the evidence we required in regard to financial commitments and a possible takeover not materialising; the EFL Board has been forced to take the most difficult of decisions.”

Bury’s expulsion means League One will now comprise of 23 teams this season with only three relegated. Town will have fixture free Saturdays on November 2nd, when the Shakers were due to visit Portman Road, and 28th March when the Blues were set to visit Gigg Lane.

Meanwhile, the EFL have given Bolton further time to conclude their takeover by Football Ventures which was close to being completed on Friday before collapsing on Saturday.

A statement on the EFL website reads: “Despite further exchanges with the administrators over the course of the Bank Holiday weekend, and right up until today’s deadline of 5pm, a resolution to ongoing impasse in negotiations regarding a completion of sale at Bolton Wanderers has not yet been found.

“The EFL board has therefore taken the decision to lift the suspension on the notice of withdrawal, which was issued as per the EFL’s insolvency policy when the club entered administration in May 2019.

“As per the League’s articles of association, this will now give the club 14 days (11.59pm on 12th September, 2019) to meet all outstanding requirements of the League’s insolvency policy or its membership in the EFL will be withdrawn.

“In respect of the situation at Bolton Wanderers, the administrators now have this period of time to successfully conclude a change of control with a preferred purchaser, or provide sufficient evidence that they are in a position to fund the club for the remainder of the 2019/20 campaign.”

Executive chair Jevans added:  “Despite repeated assurances, we are extremely disappointed that we are still not in a position to reach a successful resolution with the sale of Bolton Wanderers and have therefore taken the decision to lift the suspension on the notice of withdrawal. I again urge all parties to finalise the proposed takeover.

“The reality of this action is that there are now 14 days to secure the club’s long-term future, and I sincerely hope we can find a way through these challenging circumstances for the benefit of all those who have an association with the club.”

A statement on behalf of Paul Appleton, Bolton's joint-administrator, reads: "We note the statement from the EFL lifting the notice of withdrawal of suspension and giving 14 days to find a solution and complete a deal for the sale of the club.

"All parties have been in continuous dialogue throughout the day and are working closely together this evening in order to bring a deal to completion. We will continue to work through the night if necessary. There will be a further update as soon as possible."

A previous statement from Appleton said that "the club is currently not in a position to carry on trading and, as such, the process of closing down the company will commence on Wednesday", however, this is unlikely to begin while the current discussions are continuing.

If Bolton are unable to complete their takeover before the new deadline then they will join Bury in being expelled from the EFL and their results this season - including Town’s 5-0 win at the University of Bolton Stadium on Saturday - will be expunged.

Photo: Action Images

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runaround added 23:49 - Aug 27
Feel so sorry for the staff & fans of Bury. Football needs to change & the long term security of clubs must be a priority. I just hope a phoenix club will rise from Bury’s ashes really soon to give those fans a team to support away from the evil greed which has led to this.
Bolton have 14 days to avoid going the same way but I fear the 92 clubs will soon be 90

Oldsmoker added 23:51 - Aug 27
This is wrong on so many levels.
The fans and players will suffer the most and they were the ones who didn't do anything wrong.
Sad days.
Blessed is the Marcus who has saved us from the same fate.

Bluearmy_81 added 23:58 - Aug 27
All worship God Evans, he keeps us all in existence!! You lot are unreal...

Girthyguy added 23:58 - Aug 27
I can't imagine waking up and there being no ITFC. This realistically could be us if Marcus Evans was to sell us to the wrong person. Maybe we are lucky after all for having him. Feel for those Bury fans who will be waking up tomorrow without their football club.

tetchris added 23:59 - Aug 27
Bury could rise as a phoenix from the flames, starting in national league and hopefully getting back into league football ASAP. With Bolton it’s different, a club of that size and stature in national league it couldn’t work because the stadium and facilities are too big. Stadium would have to be demolished and re developed and Bolton have to start again somewhere else, it wouldn’t be financially sustainable

algarvefan added 00:00 - Aug 28
Spending what you do not have in ANY business is a precursor to failure, from the outset I must say I am not a Marcus Evans fan, however I do support the club being prudent and keeping a bit of cash in reserve if they can. We have invested in youth and it's now starting to pay off, I hope the owner continues to run the club in a positive way.

These are dark days for the supporters of Bury and Bolton and I really feel for them.

arc added 00:01 - Aug 28
The news about Bury is an absolute disgrace and a tragedy. I hope there will be a minute's silence at Portman Road to mark the death of such a distinguished club. My condolences to all Bury's fans.

MJR101 added 00:04 - Aug 28
And just a few miles from Bury there are massive clubs awash with zillions who stand by and watch. They could at least help,out this season until these clubs can sort themselves out.

PortmanTerrorist added 00:25 - Aug 28
Shame is brought on all those involved in running football in this country to allow this to happen, including premier league, premier league clubs (esp in Manchester) and the EFL of course.

Who is going to punish that sorry lot to the same degree the blameless fans of Bury and perhaps Bolton too have been punished for the misdermeanours of approved owners!

MurcianITCC added 03:15 - Aug 28
Steve Dale has a lot to answer for, maybe he inherited a problem but still took it on and from the outside ( without any facts to hand it's true ) seemed unwilling to sell. I'll wait to see if he is gaining from the situation.
BA81, I appreciate you want more for our fine club but what is your proposal regarding the owner?

martin587 added 06:20 - Aug 28
You have two massive premier league clubs a few miles down the round paying silly wages.Why don’t they help to save these struggling clubs.I rest my case.I feel so sorry for the towns, supporters and people who will now be out of work due to mistakes made by owners.

bobble added 06:26 - Aug 28
what did bury ever win ?

MurcianITCC added 07:01 - Aug 28

Dissboyitfc added 07:10 - Aug 28
Martin587.... Man City did help Bury, they gave them the use of their training facilities, rent free with only one condition and that was they kept up with its maintenance, Bury didnt keep up their side of the deal! Apparently its in a right old mess now! Why would Man City want to help any further? Personally i think the wealth within football should be distributed a lot more evenly, but if a club gambles and it doesnt work out the blame can only go to one place!

This is all extremely sad, could have been us a few years back! Would be us again if some on here had their way! I am not an Evans fan, but today i am glad he owns us and we have a club to support!

bluesi added 07:21 - Aug 28
So as a season ticket holder, does this now mean we pay less, as we are playing 1 less game at home? If so the refund should go straight into a fund to help other teams out in the future!!

hugster added 07:39 - Aug 28
Bobble - Bury won the FA Cup twice. 1900 and 1903. They also had 17 seasons in the top flight. A very sad day for English football, feel for the Bury fans and players and all connected.

rabbit added 07:46 - Aug 28
MurcianITCC just to let you know that buearmy-81 has the hope that ME writes his debt off and walks away!
The reality is of course this would see an end to ITFC because currently the business has a deficit of between £6 and 9 mil per season so without an owner to underwrite that loss company legislation would require the business to cease to trade, not that it would need any of that because there would be no lending institutions offering help anyway!

AYACCA added 07:50 - Aug 28
share tv rights evenly across all leagues. level the playing field as football is extremely boring now.

TractorClarke added 07:53 - Aug 28
Very sad for something like this to happen, god forbid it is ever Town facing this fate, i feel very sorry for Bury fans and players.

One thing that has annoyed me on here though is the sudden appreciation of Marcus Evans, now i am happy we are stable and it is because of him in some ways yes, but are we not where we are also because of him?

We have a tight budget, very tight and all because of Evans, pumping money into the wrong managers, selling best players at crucial times, and not investing at crucial times.

I wont go over it all again many people as well as me have said it before but the reason we are in league one and have a very small budget is because of Evans. Ironically our glorious owner has brought us closer to a situation like Bury and Bolton than he has take us further away.

So yes whilst i am glad we seem to be stable dont forget why we are struggling for investment in the first place.

WeWereZombies added 07:57 - Aug 28
I feel that Bury have been thrown under the bus as a warning by the EFL to Bolton. This fannying about had to stop but the harsh reality is in no way down to the long term supporters of Bury FC, football needs to become less of a business and get back to being the beautiful game at all levels of the sport.

britbiker added 08:17 - Aug 28
Ayacca, whilst I agree the TV money should be more evenely distributed, it would not solve the problem as wages would just increase accordingly. Look at the premier league. Completely awash with money and no club appears to worry about future sustainability. They are all chasing a dream of further greed. Us fans are also to blame. The biggest culprits are the dark suits who run football and get their easy CBE and OBE's. They are the ones who in partnership with the owners who have allowed the sustainabilty rules and fit abd proper rules to be circumnavigated. However these nameless people will just continue on their merry go round of fat salaries on company boards and government committees.

Football as we know it is screwed.

dirtydingusmagee added 08:21 - Aug 28
Bluearmy,time to change the record, have you found a buyer yet ? Do i worship Evans ? no ,far from it, But until there is someone with the money ,ambition , nerve ,to take over i will have to put up with his ways. 133 Members of Evans Out on facebook dosnt look like attracting many billionaires, What do you suggest ?

Dozzells_Bobblehat added 08:23 - Aug 28
Anyone watched the recent Amazon series following Leeds last season ? Called " Take us home " I think . Really good watch.
One bit in particular stuck out . Bluearmy 81 and others please feel free to watch . In the last episode the Leeds owner is talking about this season after they ultimately failed to go up . His words " we will have to sell some players now , it doesn't matter if we had all the money in the world , the club is running at a loss so if we don't we will breach FFP and face a points reduction " .
That's from Leeds who had a great season .
Any comments Bluearmy?

pegasus added 08:31 - Aug 28
The last few lines in Henry Winter's piece in today's 'Times':

“clubs (like Bury) nurture players that the elite either tempt at tender ages or later, or send out on loan. Twenty of England’s World Cup 23 were partly or greatly shaped by the EFL. If more visits from the Premier League in pre-season would help, so would more from the EFL, checking up on owners’ finances, motives and methods. Bury’s fans worked on cleaning up their ground yesterday. The EFL needs to work harder on cleaning up the game.”

MurcianITCC added 08:41 - Aug 28
Thanks. That's how I see the situation.
If we have to live within our income, that makes us sustainable right? So on Saturday we have our team. Unlike Bury and possibly Bolton soon
Of course we'd love to see our owner splash the cash on the first team, as if the millions he invests at youth level and the club generally isn't enough, but it's his money to spend as he wishes and all the gripes in the world won't change that.


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