'Our stance is clear': Blackpool fans send unequivocal message to potential buyers

Blackpool supporters have made it abundantly clear they won't return unless the Oystons are gone completely
Blackpool supporters have made it abundantly clear they won't return unless the Oystons are gone completely
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Blackpool supporters have sent a clear and unequivocal message to potential new owners of the football club: buy the stadium as well as the club or we won’t return.

READ MORE: Overseas firm bids to buy Seasiders - but will any deal include Bloomfield Road?

It comes after The Gazette exclusively revealed an overseas-based private equity firm has launched a bid that includes leasing Bloomfield Road.
While it remains unclear whether the stadium would remain under Oyston ownership in a prospective buyout or be sold to a separate buyer, both would be risky scenarios.

League Two side Coventry City have experienced issues with their controversial owners Sisu leasing the Ricoh Arena stadium from the local council.

The stadium is now owned by rugby union side Wasps after they bought council shares in 2014.

The situation reared its head during the 2013/14 season when Coventry were forced to play their home games at Northampton Town’s Sixfields ground - 40 miles away from their home.

The Gazette understands an interested buyer is willing to lease Bloomfield Road as part of a takeover

The Gazette understands an interested buyer is willing to lease Bloomfield Road as part of a takeover

More recently, non-league outfit Dulwich Hamlet have been threatened with eviction from their ground by the property investment fund which owns the Champion Hill stadium.

Dulwich were handed an unanticipated bill for back rent of £121,000 on Monday evening with the threat of a winding-up order to follow within 21 days, and were served notice that their licence to play at the stadium had been terminated with immediate effect.

As it stands, Blackpool Football Club is being advertised for sale as two different entities: the club and its properties.

A new owner leasing the ground would be a deeply unpopular move among Blackpool’s fanbase who have made it abundantly clear they want no Oyston involvement in the future of their football club.

Christine Seddon, chairman of Blackpool Supporters’ Trust, says there is no room for manoeuvre when it comes to the potential of Oystons remaining involved with the future of the club.

She told The Gazette: “Boycotting Blackpool fans have made it abundantly clear that they will never return until the Oystons have gone. All of them. Completely.

“For any business consortium to consider taking on the club but leaving Owen Oyston as the owner would simply be unsustainable for them.

“Even a small amount of research will show that this is a very bad idea and the due diligence required before any deal is done will surely put a stop to such an arrangement.

“Not A Penny More continues until all Oystons are gone.”

This latest development in the ongoing saga at Blackpool Football Club follows claims made in a national newspaper that an American group, separate to the private equity firm, is also interested in taking over.

The Gazette understands five or six separate parties remain interested, although one obstacle remains: Owen Oyston.