By Simon Evans
MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) – English League One side Bury have been given extra time by the Football League (EFL) to see if they can complete the sale of the club and secure the finances to complete the season.
The third-tier club had faced a deadline of midnight on Friday to satisfy the league of their financial situation but they asked for more time after receiving a late takeover bid.
Steve Dale, owner of the north-west team, said he had accepted a bid from London company C&N Sporting Risk, who confirmed they were in talks to buy the 134-year-old club.
The EFL board met on Saturday and decided to give the parties until five p.m. local time (1600 GMT) on Tuesday to complete the deal and satisfy them of the club’s viability.
“Whilst no formal sale has been completed, despite reports to the contrary, enough credible information was presented to allow the Board to agree to work exclusively with the Club and C&N Sporting Risk over this Bank Holiday weekend in an attempt to finalise the change of control and achieve a positive outcome for Bury FC,” the EFL said in a statement.
All of Bury’s scheduled games this season have been suspended and the EFL said they were not willing to continue down that path in order to protect the “integrity of the competition”.
The league said that should the deal not be completed successfully Bury would end their 125-year membership of the Football League.
EFL Executive Chair Debbie Jevans said the decision was a “final effort to allow the Club the opportunity to survive, to grant an extension and work exclusively with the Club and C&N Sporting Risk to see if a takeover is possible.
“No one wants to see a Club lose its place in the League and we will now work with the potential purchasers over the weekend and ahead of the Tuesday deadline in an attempt to find the solutions required for a sale to take place.”
(Reporting by Simon Evans; editing by Clare Fallon)