What transpired in court today was wonderfully reported by Ian Firth (@SuperWhiteSmurf) and has been summed up on this site by Jonny (follow this link).
The long and the short of it is that the case was adjourned until the 7th March to allow Bolton Wanderers to complete a takeover deal. During the hearing there was a sale agreement exchanged which is evidence that Bolton are close to completing said takeover.
This is presumably to the Sport Shield consortium led by Dean Holdsworth, something every Bolton fan and there dog knows. It is being reported that this is a 50/50 deal now with another party. Hopefully this is close to completion and what came out during the case seems to indicate that that is the case.
But as I said above we are not out of the woods yet. We have been here before a number of times. This is not the first time we have been told that the takeover is imminent and that the club is about to be saved. This time we need it to be true.
Every time we appear before the court the chances of us getting another adjournment decrease. We are without a doubt flirting with death at this point, in fact we are doing so to such an extent you wonder whether Bolton are this universes Thanos. Just a shame we don’t get a cool infinity gauntlet.
No takeover before that next court date would almost certainly mean administration. In my piece yesterday (read here) I decide that would not be a bad thing given Eddie Davies new demands. I’m sure a lot will be said of them on this site today so I will leave that to others. But administration does guarantee relegation, so if it can be avoided while safeguarding the clubs future that is of course preferable. The closer we get to the 7th March without a takeover thought the less likely avoiding administration gets.
Even if the takeover goes through in the coming days we are still in a seriously bad financial position. During the hearing today it was stated that Bolton are running up a weekly PAYE liability of £175,000. I’m sure no one needs it pointing out to them that this is a staggering sum of money and this along with our other outstanding liabilities, whatever they may be at this point, will need to be dealt with as soon as a takeover goes through.
That makes it likely a new owner will instantly have to shell out a lot of money. Will they have the necessary cash? Only time will tell, you assume they will if they are to pass all the tests to take control of the club. But how much money will they have left after dealing with the mounting debt pile?
There is as such a risk that the issue of administration and the impending financial doom will simply get kicked down the road. It will simply become future Bolton Wanderers’ problem.
There is such a large amount to sort out that it is hard to be positive until the hard work of doing so is well underway. But this adjournment and the news of the impending sale of the club does mean there may be light at the end of the tunnel yet. Right now as Bolton fans we should still be fearful of what the future brings, but if everything said today is true then it may not be long until we can focus all our attention on just how bad Ben Amos is and forget all about the murky world of football finance.