AFC Telford United: National League North club reject Irish consortium takeover

Bucks Head
AFC Telford United were relegated from English football's fifth tier in April 2015

AFC Telford United have rejected an offer from an Irish consortium to become majority shareholder in the National League North club.

The group, led by Irish property developer Anthony McMullen, wanted 51% control of the Shropshire club.

But Telford say that they had concerns over the investment arrangement.

"The club board entered direct discussions with the potential investor from Ireland," the Shropshire club confirmed in a statement.

"There were a number of phone discussions and we met him face to face on 15 May and 19 May.

"The individual outlined a proposed structure for the club that substantially increased off-the-field operating costs by at least £150,000 per annum.

"There was no indication as to how these additional costs would be financed, given he was unable to finance the purchase of the shares."

Telford's recent history

AFC Telford were formed by fans in 2004 following the liquidation of the old Telford United, famed in the 1970s and 1980s for their non-league FA Cup-fighting exploits.

Since being reformed, in the eighth tier of English football, the Bucks have twice been promoted to English football's fifth tier, in 2011 and 2014, only to be relegated in 2013 and again in 2015.

The Shropshire-based outfit have now spent two seasons back at sixth-tier level, finishing 18th in 2015-16 and 17th in 2016-17.

After seeking new investment in October 2016, an American-based Telford fan made an official approach for his home-town club.

But the then fan-owned club's constitution, run by a Supporters' Trust, would have allowed him to initially invest no more than 20%.

The club, who last year tried to raise £50,000 in extra income to improve a cash flow problem, have since changed their structure.

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