Businessman Paul Buttivant to launch rival Argyle bid

By Philip TuckettBBC Sport

Surrey-based businessman Paul Buttivant is preparing a rival bid to buy Plymouth Argyle out of administration.

On Monday, Plymouth's administrator urged club stakeholders to support a buy out bid from Devon-based businessman James Brent.

However, Buttivant is now leading a rival consortium, backed by a European Investment Fund.

A source close to Buttivant said the bid would be sent to the club's administrator by Thursday.

It is understood Buttivant's bid has no links with previous members of the Plymouth Argyle board, or those currently involved with running the club.

In 2004, Buttivant launched a similar, but ultimately unsuccessful, bid to buy Wrexham who were also in administration at the time.

The Paul Buttivant Consortium has been attempting to get involved with a football club ever since, and even made enquiries about buying Plymouth several years ago, whilst the club were in the Championship.

Buttivant's bid is said to prioritise football, with additional leisure and entertainment facilities also on the agenda to help make the business viable.

Additionally, it is believed that Buttivant is willing to engage in talks with Brent about the possibility of a joint deal to buy the club, however confidentiality agreements prevent the two parties from holding discussions.

League One Plymouth were hit with a 10-point deduction in February when they issued a notice of their intention to appoint an administrator.

They formally entered administration last month and have since asked playing and non-playing staff to defer their salaries for March and April.

On Monday, Argyle captain Romain Larrieu revealed that the Professional Footballers' Association has helped with players' wages for a third time.