Spectators of the Port Vale pantomime can be forgiven for wondering why it has all gone quiet on the boardroom/takeover front.
Questions are being asked…
*Is Mo Chaudry still interested in buying the Vale?
*Why hasn’t Mark Sims joined the board yet – given that the club now has Robbie Williams’ written proxy?
*What is happening with the offer of a seat on the board for North London Valiants?
*Why has the chairman been so anonymous since the EGM?
*Just what is the state of the club’s finances?
The list goes on and on.
The truth of the matter is that things are happening – albeit at a snail’s pace.
Mo Chaudry is monitoring the situation at Vale Park and hasn’t gone away.
However, there is very little he can do at present given the shabby way in which he has been rebuffed by the board at every turn.
In truth, Mark Sims remains the key in all of this.
A little birdie tells me he will be meeting with club representatives on Thursday in an attempt to speed up his appointment to the board.
Mark isn’t dragging his heels. However, he is being asked to sign guarantees which would financially obligate him to the club – without being able to do his due diligence.
I can understand full well his reticence to put pen to paper when he doesn’t know just how bad the club’s finances are.
Make no mistake, the board have done nothing but throw obstacles in the path of Mark Sims because, like Mo Chaudry, they never wanted him to be a director of our club.
With regard to North London Valiants, the situation remains confused.
The club offered NLV a seat on the board but no-one has yet explained how this would work and who would sponsor Malcolm Hirst to the tune of £50,000 worth of shares.
Call me cynical, but unless Peter Jackson is prepared to sponsor the very people who were instrumental in his downfall at the EGM, the only way this could work is if the board allowed shares to be pooled in order for NLV to be sponsored.
I shall be watching this situation with interest to ensure that this is exposed as a hollow offer if the board fails to honour its promise.
As for the state of the club’s finances, I suspect we won’t know the real truth until Mark Sims or NLV get themselves on to that board.
However, no matter how the chief executive tries to paint it, an awful lot of people (my guess is 800 plus) won’t be renewing their season tickets.
People like a bloke who has emailed me with the names of nine family members who are refusing to renew while Bill Bratt, Glenn Oliver and Mike Lloyd remain in post.
Given that last season (and I’m sticking with the figures The Sentinel was given) we sold 4,300 STs, then we could be looking at a sale of around 3,500 STs this year.
That will have a huge impact on the club in the short to medium turn.
So I would ask this question: What is more important to Bill, Glenn and Mike – their own positions or the money and support from hundreds of genuine Vale fans who are making a sacrifice for the club they love?