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Mystery Surrounds Club & Trust Plans for Bolton Wanderers' Stadium

Clear as mud

A general view of the Reebok Stadium

We have, in the past few days, seen the trading of statements between the Bolton Wanderers chairman Ken Anderson and the Supporters Trust.

The issue has been the ACV (Asset of Community Value) placed upon the Reebok Stadium by the town council earlier this year. A key task undertaken by the Trust, the registration of the ACV status of the stadium provides Trust members with an opportunity to influence any future sale of the Macron Stadium by being part of any such process.

Wanderers chairman Anderson wrote one of his columns/buy our stuff pieces earlier this week and revealed his belief that the ACV will prevent the club from obtaining the necessary future funding reacquire the car parks and office space that were sold to Michael James prior to his arrival.

The waters were further muddied when the Trust announced this morning that the ACV cannot be 'undone'.

So what does this mean?

Well, according to someone far cleverer than me (I can hear you over there), all the ACV does is provide the community with a more transparent sale process and time to prepare a bid themselves.

A sale/leaseback situation can still happen as long as any potential buyer doesn't mind having an ACV on their asset. This would allow the ACV holder to raise finance and buy the stadium and then lease it back to the club.

The trouble is, as far as this thicko evil blogger can see, is that there is a chance of a reduction of value in terms of the stadium itself. If you were to compare it to buying a house where another party had a registered interest, then it would likely reduce both the value of the asset and the number of people who would be interested.

It could also impact upon the ability to borrow against the value of the stadium.

So this latest development has only served to muddy the waters. Will Ken get his wish to have the option to raise finance against the stadium?

Internet tittle-tattle last week gave voice to the belief that Ken desires to sell the stadium and lease it back - much like Leeds United did recently - to raise funds to buy back assets sold to Michael James.

What will happen in the end? I have no idea. This mess isn't showing any signs of being resolved.