Bolton Wanderers takeover deadline extended

Crisis club Bolton WanderersCrisis club Bolton Wanderers
Crisis club Bolton Wanderers
The deadline for Laurence Bassini to complete a takeover of Bolton has been extended – with the Football League confirming the club’s postponed fixture against Brentford will not be played this week.

Wanderers – already relegated to League One – were originally scheduled to face Brentford in the last home league game of the season last Saturday but the game was cancelled after the squad refused to play in protest at unpaid wages.

Brentford’s next opponents will be Preston North End on Sunday in what was supposed to be their final game of the campaign.

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Bassini had been tipped to buy the club from Ken Anderson but the original deadline for a deal passed on Monday with nothing in place.

However, with Bassini set to hold talks with EFL chief executive Shaun Harvey on Tuesday night, the takeover could be resurrected after Bolton announced an extension.

“Further to the club statement made on the Saturday 27 April 2019 both Ken Anderson and Laurence Bassini, and their respective advisors, have held further dialogue,” read a statement on Bolton’s website.

“All parties are working for the best outcome for the football club and its supporters and everyone’s efforts are focussed on a successful conclusion.

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“Following the arrangement for Mr Bassini to meet with Shaun Harvey this evening, it has been agreed that the previous deadline for conclusion set as the close of business Monday has been extended to allow these discussions to take place.

“All parties have agreed that in the event of the EFL not being satisfied with the proposed funding structure presented by Mr Bassini then negotiations will cease with immediate effect and Mr Bassini will withdraw his interest in the club.

“No further statement will be made by either party prior to the mutual deadline set for conclusion of the matter.”

In an earlier statement, released on Saturday, Bolton accused Bassini of failing to keep his pledge that players and staff would be paid during the takeover process.

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That led to the Championship game against Brentford being postponed, with the EFL announcing earlier on Tuesday that the fixture would not be rescheduled for this week.

Wanderers have been told they must fulfil their two outstanding fixtures – both the Brentford clash as well as a trip to Nottingham Forest on Sunday – with the EFL set to decide on Thursday when the rearranged fixture takes place.

“The EFL has this morning confirmed that Bolton Wanderers’ suspended Sky Bet Championship fixture with Brentford will not be played this week,” a statement released by the governing body read.

“The EFL Board will now determine on Thursday 2 May 2019 as to what arrangements are to be put in place in regards to the fixture and Bolton Wanderers will be instructed accordingly.

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“As previously advised, EFL Regulations do provide for any League match to be played within four days of the end of the normal playing season (Sunday 5 May 2019).

“The EFL reserves its position in relation to the Club not making the arrangements to play the game at the earliest opportunity and this matter will be brought to the attention of the Independent Disciplinary Commission the Club has been referred to at the appropriate time.”