Liquidation looms as Bolton Wanderers takeover collapses

Bolton Wanderers

Fresh crisis has engulfed Bolton Wanderers after the collapse of its proposed takeover leaves it in danger of liquidation.

Administrators for the League One side said the proposed sale of the club and hotel to preferred bidder Football Ventures had been agreed by all parties by 5pm on Friday, August 23, and undertakings had been issued by all solicitors, except those for former owner Ken Anderson.

They said “devastatingly, on Saturday morning that deal collapsed”.

And, unless a solution can be found by 5pm on Tuesday, August 27 – the deadline set by the English Football League (EFL) – the club will be expelled from the league, and administrators will start closing down the club on Wednesday morning, with the loss of more than 150 jobs.

Paul Appleton, joint adminstrator for Bolton Wanderers, said earlier today (August 26) that he and his team have spent the past 48 hours working around the clock, striving to get a deal back on track and trying to convince the parties still in conflict that the very fate of Bolton Wanderers depends on them finding a compromise.

He added: “At this stage, there seems little point in apportioning blame because that makes no difference to the staff, players, management, supporters and the community who have once more seen their club taken back to the brink.”

Mr Appleton revealed: “On Sunday evening, there was some tentative dialogue, but we are still some way from reaching a solution. Therefore, I am appealing to those parties whose position seems intractable to do everything to reach a compromise.

“In just over 24 hours, the club will have its membership of the EFL revoked. Over and above 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.

“This will ultimately lead to its liquidation, the expulsion of the club from the EFL and the inevitable loss of over 150 jobs. More than that, it will devastate a community for whom the football club is a beacon of hope and expectation.”

He added: “I reiterate, unless there is a change of position from any of the parties involved, the process of closing down the club and ultimately placing Bolton Wanderers into liquidation will begin this week.”