Chris Kirchner (centre) has also previously attempted to buy Derby County’s Championship rivals Preston North End

Chris Kirchner’s attempt to buy financially stricken club Derby County is in danger of collapsing, despite the American insisting the takeover will happen.

Kirchner has told BBC Sport that he expects the deal to be done today.

BBC Radio Derby reports that funds promised by the 34-year-old to pay the Rams’ wages for May have not arrived.

Those wages are understood to have been paid by someone else close to the club.

The English Football League conditionally approved the takeover when contracts for the sale of the club had been exchanged on 17 May.

At the time, the EFL said “the terms of a Membership Agreement” had been agreed with the American’s 9CK Sports Holdings Limited company to allow the sale of the club.

Derby’s administrators Quantuma had said the takeover was conditional on the sale of Derby’s Pride Park home ground, which is still owned by former majority shareholder Mel Morris.

Meetings between Kirchner, his representatives, Morris and Derby City Council, who have said they were exploring options to buy the ground, have failed to resolve the issue.

Derby, the EFL and Quantuma are yet to comment on the latest developments.

If the deal does fall through, it will be the second time an attempt by Kirchner to buy the club has failed.

An initial bid was withdrawn in December before the American revived his interest in April after an attempt to buy Derby’s then-Championship rivals Preston North End collapsed just days earlier.

It is understood that former Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley, whose company Sports Direct is based in Derbyshire, has remained interested in buying the Rams throughout.

Delays in selling Derby plunges the club’s immediate future into serious doubt, with the Rams facing their first season in England’s third division since 1986 after Wayne Rooney’s side were relegated from the Championship at the end of the 2021-22 campaign.

Restrictions placed on the club while in administration has left manager Rooney unable to sign new players, nor able to offer fresh deals to those he already has.

Just five first-team players – Krystian Bielik, Max Bird, Jason Knight, Louie Sibley and Jack Stretton – have contracts for next season.

Rooney, England and Manchester United’s all-time leading goalscorer, has previously said that his own future at the club was dependent on the prompt sale of the club at the end of the season.

How did Derby get into this situation?

Source link