Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 31 August 2014

Pompey set for more upheaval

Mark Jacob

Portsmouth could be on course for their fifth owner of a turbulent season.

Executive director Mark Jacob has revealed that "two or three groups" have approached the board in the last week with the aim of taking over the Premier League's bottom club. But Jacob admitted Pompey would need to take "every due care" to ensure the proposed owners really do have the funds necessary.

Jacob, speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live's Sportsweek programme, said: "The board have been approached by several interested parties over the last couple of days."

Hong Kong businessman Balram Chainrai seized control earlier this week when he acquired Ali Al Faraj's 90% stake in the club.

Chainrai had loaned the club £17million and Jacob said: "He was providing short-term funding for the club and that has been converted into equity.

"He is technically the new owner, all subject to the Premier League's fit and proper person test. It is a short-term, interim measure where he is taking control pending new investment or a potential new owner. He's come in to stabilise it on a short-term basis.

"There are potentially two or three groups who have approached the board and Mr Chainrai with regard to the possibility of taking over.

"They are from different parts of the globe and some even more locally.

"It's got to the stage where the board will have to take every due care and consideration into the people who do come to the table with regard to proof of funds. We can't have any more short-termism at the club.

"There has been a lot of turmoil and everything has come to a head over the last week or so. It's quite delicate at the moment but we are confident a group will be in place very soon to move things forward to allow Mr Chainrai to step aside."

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