Owen Oyston invites Valeri Belokon to meeting in further statement to The Gazette

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Following a conversation with Blackpool FC reporter Matt Scrafton this morning, Owen Oyston has requested the following statement is published in full on The Gazette's website.

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Owen Oyston has invited Valeri Belokon to meet with him

Owen Oyston has invited Valeri Belokon to meet with him

READ MORE: Owen Oyston breaks silence to accuse Valeri Belokon of 'bluffing' Blackpool fans

The statement, attributed to a spokesman from the Oyston group of companies, reads:

"For years Mr Belokon has publicly stated that he loves the football club and wants to return to be involved in it. He has also recently stated that he does not want to damage the football club.

"This now turns out to be fake news and a fantasy designed to fool those fans who believe he is returning. Mr Belokon has no intention of coming back to the football club or protecting it as he has publicly claimed and he has successfully pulled the wool over the eyes of those fans who believed he was their salvation.

"On February 7, a letter was sent to Clifford Chance, the solicitors for Mr Belokon, offering him not just the football club but also the football stadium, including all the assets within the curtilage of the stadium which includes the hotel and all the substantial revenues emanating from service accommodation within the stadium.

"The offer also includes the training ground etc.

"Owen Oyston has already paid Mr Belokon £10m and the offer that was made is valued at a figure substantially more than the reduced sum now owed to Mr Belokon.

"The stadium alone cost over £25million to build over the last 20 years approximately and would cost a lot more to build now and also has substantial revenue generated by the Health Care Trust estimated at £650,000 per year which could be increased substantially by other revenue flows.

"The offer also includes the football club over which was the cause of the court proceedings in the first place. It is paradoxical that the experts working for Mr Belokon valued the football club alone at a figure well over £40million but this did include loans to Blackpool Football Club Properties (the parent company).

"Personal overtures were also made to Mr Belokon’s private mobile repeating the above offer and the same offer was made through a third-party journalist who was known to be friendly with Mr Belokon.

"The silence was deafening and no responses were received. The solicitors acting for Mr Belokon were pressed several times in writing and verbally to reply. Eventually, some weeks after the written offer to Clifford Chance and in a verbal exchange, Clifford Chance said that Mr Belokon was “not interested”.

"The solicitors for the Oystons said surely it made sense to sit around a table and try to work out an answer to prevent damage to the football club which could force it into administration or bankruptcy.

"There has been no further response from Mr Belokon, his solicitors or anyone else.

"Clifford Chance refused to put anything in writing which was extremely unusual for them. One can only conclude that this failure to respond in writing was because Mr Belokon did not want a negative news story which would undermine his protestations over the years of his love for the club.

"Furthermore, the Oyston side contacted both the solicitors for Mr Belokon and Mr Belokon himself to ask if they would allow the personal monies of Mr Owen Oyston which were in his banks and building societies at the time to be used exclusively for Blackpool Football Club.

"Owen was prepared to give an undertaking to that effect. This offer was repudiated and this money has now been extracted under the Court Order to Mr Belokon. This leaves the football club in a potentially perilous position and Mr Belokon is aware of this and by his actions he is not protecting the club as he has publicly claimed.

"At the moment the football club is using money to keep it afloat that was borrowed by Owen Oyston.

"It is clear now that Mr Belokon on the one hand is seriously damaging the club by refusing to allow the Oystons to fund it and on the other hand Mr Belokon is publicly proclaiming that he is the friend of Blackpool Football Club.

"The simple truth is that he is refusing to engage in discussions to save the football club from further damage and to avoid at all costs its administration and the deduction of 12 points which will relegate it.

"Mr Valeri Belokon knows that substantial monies are sitting in the bank account of a solicitor acting for a potential lender to Mr Owen Oyston subject only to due diligence which is close to completion and yet he is creating restriction after restriction, charging properties and sending in bailiffs all designed to damage the football club.

"His rhetoric is that somehow he doesn’t want to damage the football club but he is starving it of the financial support as set out above and this will inevitably do the club serious damage and even force it out of business.

"It is now over to Mr Belokon to respond to these facts and state exactly where he stands. An unbiased observer might conclude that he just wishes to take the money and run without any consideration for the club he proclaims to love."

A message from Owen to Valeri

“When we first met we got on famously and together created a success story.

"We have always had a good relationship and I believe affection for each other even during the worst stages of the court cases.

"It’s not too late for you and I to sit down and sort this matter out in the best interests of Blackpool Football Club and to ensure that the football club does not suffer any more damage and is protected against administration or worse. I await your call.

"Since Natalie was appointed chairwoman of the football club we have only lost one game out of eight and she has created a new positive environment and I believe this is reflected in the her relationship with the manager and the players.

"Imagine if we could resolve the football club issues off the pitch there would be I believe even better performances on the pitch. This manager and team could certainly take the club to the Championship in due course."