Chris Kirchner has attended a number of Derby County matches in recent weeks

US businessman Chris Kirchner hopes to be cleared to take over Derby County at a meeting later this week.

He was confirmed last month as the preferred bidder for the club by administrators Quantuma.

And manager Wayne Rooney said last week that he expected the takeover to be completed within 10 days.

Kirchner is returning to England for a specially convened meeting on Thursday with the English Football League board when he expects to be given approval.

He posted on Twitter:external-link “All approved except for the purchase agreement and the membership agreement (for the league membership of the club that I’ll assume) which will be done Thursday with the EFL board. I’m coming over for that in person.”

However, Rooney said last week that Derby City Council is working towards a deal to purchase the club’s Pride Park ground from former owner Mel Morris and Kirchner confirmed his takeover would not go ahead until that happens.

Answering questions on social media, he said: “I’m conditional that MM no longer owns the stadium. I’m not directly involved in those discussions, so I don’t have a comment right now. That’s the last hurdle though.”

Derby have been in administration since September 2021 and, having had 21 points deducted this season for going into administration and breaches of financial regulations, their relegation from the Championship was confirmed by a defeat at Queen’s Park Rangers on 18 April.

However, they won 2-0 at Blackpool on Saturday and will play their final game before dropping into the third tier of English football for the first time since the mid-1980s at home to Cardiff City on Saturday, which Kirchner plans to attend.

He first expressed an interest in buying debt-ridden Derby last October, but withdrew his initial offer just before Christmas.

Kirchner subsequently re-entered the process and on 6 April Quantuma said his offer represented “the best deal for creditors and one which will secure the long-term future of the club”.

He has already submitted information for the EFL’s owners and directors’ test and a forward business plan.

Derby remain under a transfer embargo until a takeover is completed and only have five players contracted for next season, but despite that, Rooney is pressing ahead with summer recruitment plans.

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