Laurence Bassini’s proposed takeover of Bolton Wanderers is off, the club said, adding that “no further discussions will be entered into on the matter with him”.
Mr Bassini, the owner of Watford Football Club between 2011 and 2012, had requested 48 hours to provide the Football League with proof of funds on Tuesday, but Bolton confirmed on Thursday that the deadline had not been met.
Speaking to the JC when the takeover was still subject to talks, Mr Bassini said he wanted to “make Bolton Wanderers great again”, pledging to “restructure” the debt-laden club, which has been relegated to the third tier of English football.
Wanderers postponed their penultimate match of the season amid a player strike over unpaid wages – their second walk-out of the season.
Mr Bassini had promised “significant funds” – believed to be in the region of £20 million – to pay players’ unpaid wages and to clear debts with creditors.
In the wake of his stint at Watford, during which he clashed with fans and the media, the Stanmore-based Jewish businessman was found guilty of dishonesty and deception by a Football League independent commission.
He was banned from owning a professional football club for three years, and later declared bankruptcy.