After wasting 5 months; Heaney/BIL pulls out of Argyle deal!

After five months of secrecy, missed deadlines, failure to pay full exclusivity fees (to cover costs) and false promises, the latest news is that administrators P&A Partnership are finally talking to other parties as Kevin Heaney is reported to be pulling out of the running to buy the club!

Heaney has said as indicated in the article linked above that he may pull out of the Argyle deal if the Football League don’t approve the takeover today (8th September) and it is now almost 1am BST on September 9th. The Football League was never going to approve the deal as there is no plan to pay the football creditors, e.g. the players and backroom staff, the total amount owed is believed to be around £3m, on top of the £6m needed to clear Argyle’s non football debts.

This whole administration process has been a joke; it has done immeasurable damage to Plymouth Argyle Football Club and also the administrators, to a lesser extent; reputation. Having a deal on the table for five months only for that deal to evaporate when there were other interested parties involved from the outset will certainly hurt their potential to obtain other insolvency contracts. Even more so if the club is eventually sold to James Brent who was the first to bid for the club back in March! It wouldn’t surprise me if P&A see themselves facing legal action!

In his original bid; James Brent wanted Plymouth city council to purchase the stadium and land; which I don’t see happening as the last time I was in Plymouth, almost three years ago; the council were making huge cutbacks after a big shortfall in their anticipated budget and their actual budget. So I don’t see where the money to purchase Home Park will come from, unless there is some deal going on in secret between Brent and the council that us mere mortals are not privy to.

Anyway, now that Heaney and Bishop International Limited have fallen by the wayside (fingers crossed as this hasn’t officially been revealed), hopefully a deal can be struck with James Brent or Paul Buttivant or some other bidder with the funds to complete quickly. Is there an official deadline for the sale has to be completed? will there be Football League sanctions if the club is not taken out of administration in time? I keep on hearing about there not being much time to complete any deal but I haven’t heard of any specific deadline; not that deadlines matter to Brendan Guilfoyle and the P&A Partnership; how many did BIL/Heaney miss, half a dozen?

In football matters, Argyle suffered their fifth consecutive defeat in the league away at Burton Albion’s Pirelli Stadium, the home side scoring on the stroke of half time and again 12 minutes after half time. Will Atkinson did score a consolation goal for the Pilgrims in second half added time but it was too little, too late. This defeat casts Argyle four points adrift at the bottom of the league after Hereford United beat Dagenham & Redbridge. The task is getting increasingly difficult for Peter Reid and his squad of rookies, Argyle desperately need to start scoring points to reverse this downward trend, wins would be nice but getting a few draws will help the cause, Plymouth haven’t won this season in a total of eight games, six league and two cup competitions.

Update [9 September 2011 @ 9:30]: Kevin Heaney has now backtracked on his comments yesterday about walking away from an Argyle deal and is now saying that he (Bishop Intl) are not pulling out of the running after the Football League called their bluff by deferring their decision on the deal. At this point I would hope that administrator Brendan Guilfoyle will ignore BIL from now on as they have had five months to complete; time for either Brent or Buttivant to make the sale of the club happen, there’s been way too many delays and false promises from Heaney!

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