Date: 10th June 2009 at 11:45pm
Written by:

It is easy to worry, to start shuffling a little uneasily with the amount of time that Dr SAF’s proposed takeover of Pompey seems to be taking – but these things do take time, they do not happen overnight, granted ours seems to be taking forever but a date in July was always the date – from the time the deal was made public – that was targeted to be the completion date of those involved in the deal and for information that has been said to me by a couple of people, and nothing has changed …

I think that The Guardian’s title of the article they ran that mentions the time it will take to go through was misleading in many ways, but not in others.

Misleading as the deal is not in as much jeopardy as it might be made to look or in as much ‘limbo’ as it might seem but not misleading in some ways as far as the ‘limbo’ thoughts go – we are facing the prospect of being left in limbo as we cannot appoint a manager not to mention several players’ contracts I would guess end at the end of this month, so what do we do? We cannot offer new deals as the new manager might not want them to stay, nor can we send them away as they might! The possibility of going onto rolling weekly deals could happen, but is that likely?

Now that is the limbo we face, and not so much a limbo stat for plenty that I expected to be released, but limbo for some that I hope we can keep…

Dr SAF’s spokesman Ivo Ilic Gabara had this to say, admitting that the deal ‘could’ still fail to go through, but not saying it would not, to be fair they are just being honest: ‘what I can tell you is that from the beginning the timescale hoped to complete due diligence (will be) in the course of July. Any due diligence process is open to any outcome. The due diligence process is a very serious process after which the two parties decide whether to complete the understanding that was reached (under) the memorandum of understanding.

‘But then you have accountants, lawyers, the other party – how can you control whether the other party (the current owner, Alexandre Gaydamak) at the end of due diligence is still going to be interested in selling? What I can say is that Al Fahim very much wants to complete the process and the acquisition and sees a great future for the club.’

His people will ‘meet the full requirements of the Premier League’ to ensure that the fit and proper tests are past with it also said that ‘if there are investors that fall within the criteria for disclosure under league rules we’ll disclose them.’

This is a very complex process, that takes time and to be honest I really do not think that details of this from such an early stage were meant to be leaked when they were, the British media had no idea of this on-going deal so would they have, had it not been for, who broke this – maybe with some ‘hint’ from those involved?

But any suggestion of this being a ‘publicity stunt’ were shot down though: ‘certainly not. Whoever spoke about a publicity stunt?

‘He was engaged to broker the deal (with City) which he did very successfully. This is a very serious (transaction) that also has social implications for the club and its fans for which Al Fahim has given very serious and very thorough consideration.’

Like I say this is a time consuming and complex matter, and I would imagine even more so with the new ‘fit and proper persons act’.

Not to mention we are talking an £80m deal, or probably thereabouts – this is not small change and is bigger than anything that this club has ever seen, with the potential to offer us things that we have always needed but never seriously thought would be possible. Anyone buying into this needs to make sure they know what they are getting into and they also need to make sure they can prove to the premier league that they know who they are letting into our club!

As put to me in a conversation I had ‘the man is spending tens of thousands of pounds just to proceed with the due diligence, he is serious but there is a process that needs to be followed.’

With another point we need to think about, and take into account highlighted ‘we might remember all the mud that came our way when we didn’t in the past and were regarded as somewhat of a dodgy cowboy outfit.’

I share the frustrations of everyone, I want the deal done but once again cannot but stress the need for ‘patience’. We have July, and quite possibly mid July as a target date then ‘schedules’ will be met I am sure.

Of course, this is Pompey we are talking about so nothing is ever easy, so given past histories and false dawns that we have seen there will be a ‘cautious’ nature taken by many, and that is not a bad thing, but lets just keep it at cautious and not pessimistic – the deal will go through, but needs to go through right.

I do not really know much, if anything, about other deals going on so I am just making assumptions which could be well off but Sunderland might have seen their deal go smoothly, but, and like I say I do not know much about the deal they have done but I think the guy that had bought into them was already involved in some way with the club? Was he not already on the board with a certain percentage stake already? The West Ham deal appears to be a different type of deal and with Newcastle no longer in the premier league, if a deal goes through the ‘fit and proper’ rules might not be as stringent outside of the premier league, which marches to its own beat…

Like I have said before, the deal will go through, but as I keep stressing here, and have done in the past, it will take time.

If we could at least bring in a manager that would be a start, and hopefully all being well within the next few weeks – as the deal nears its completion we can at least do that to bring in another level of stability. Players being left in limbo is a worry and missing out on players, albeit free agents, is another concern as we could be missing a trick with some of these but what can you do…

I know that I would rather it took time and we got this done than be faced with the future we looked to be being faced with, wouldn’t you?


Join the Vital Pompey Debate