Bolton Wanderers’ tax case goes to extra time

Ken Anderson

Reluctant Bolton Wanderers owner Ken Anderson welcomed the High Court’s decision today (April 3) to allow extra time in the club’s case over unpaid tax, and then berated his players for their current protest action after delays in salary payments.

The case against the club over an outstanding £1.2m tax bill was adjourned again until May 8, avoiding the threat of administration or liquidation, for now.

Mr Anderson said the stay of execution will enable him to finalise a deal for the sale of his shares to interested buyers, who he says “have committed to buying the club and clearing all the debts including the substantial amounts that were there before I got involved with the club and secured on the stadium, hotel and training ground”.

He also dismissed speculation that “so-called mystery buyer Gaspard Holdings” was the next owner of the Championship side.

Earlier today it was confirmed that Bolton’s home game with fellow relegation contenders Ipswich Town will go ahead this Saturday, if the club can provide adequate staffing, but Mr Anderson added that it also depended on the players, who have stayed away from training this week in protest at the late payment of wages by the club.

Mr Anderson said: “This may now depend on whether the players see sense and stay loyal to the supporters and season ticket holders and return to full training tomorrow.

“For my part, I continue to be positive and think that we still have a good chance of retaining our Championship status and also believe that my decision not to place the club in administration and incur a 12 points deduction was the correct one.

“If l had have placed the club in administration, it would have meant that the club would have incurred a 12-point deduction either this season or next depending on the timing and my aim is, and always will be, to try and ensure that this did not happen, for obvious reasons.”

Bolton are currently second from bottom in the Championship on 32 points, five from safety, while Ipswich are bottom on 24 points.