League Two side Morecambe have announced that their club up for sale. Current owner Peter McGuigan has been part of the set-up at the Lancashire club for 20 years, whilst being the club's Chairman for 16 years, and thus has been part of the Shrimps most successful years, including their promotion to the Football League in 2007 and their move to their new Globe Arena ground in 2010, with the club's main stand carrying his name.
McGuigan indicated at a recent Morecambe fans forum that he had received some interest from outside investors, and has now decided to make his willingness to sell the club a public one. He has told the media his hope is to sell the club by the summer, with the aim of any successor being able to set out the club's plans for the 2016-17 season on fresh terms:
"Having been chairman for 16 years, I feel the time is right for a new owner to take the club forward and build on a strong platform that exists today. The club moved into a new purpose-built wholly owned stadium in August 2010 and is virtually debt free. There is an opportunity to develop the ground further with a new office block, as well as a hotel adjacent to the stadium. These exciting developments will assist in securing the long-term financial viability of the club. At present we are looking for expressions of interests from individuals who have the financial ability to take this club further. We will require a complete open book approach from all concerned to ensure the best for the club."
Morecambe's on-the-field form has been precarious, to say the least. They've gone ten games without a win, with their last victory coming against Yeovil Town on January 16th, having accrued just two points out of the last thirty available. As such they've slid rapidly down the League Two table, currently lying in 18th place and eleven points off the relegation zone. However, there's no current hint that this slide and McGuigan's plan to sell are directly connected.
Last month also saw 17th placed Notts County put up for sale, with Ray Trew resigning as Chairman and announcing his wish to end his six year association with the club, claiming that online abuse from fans had provoked his decision:
"When my family are subjected to the kind of foul, mindless abuse that they have been in recent days, both in person and courtesy of the oh so brave keyboard warriors, regardless of whether this is just the minority ruining it for the larger supporter base, I have to make changes."
Trew has come under heavy criticism for the number of first team managers he has got through under his tenure. Since Ian McParland's departure in October 2009, Notts County have named Hans Backe, Dave Kevan, Steve Cotterill, Craig Short, Paul Ince, Martin Allen, Keith Curle, Chris Kiwomya, Shaun Derry, Paul Hart, Ricardo Moniz and Jamie Fullarton as their various first team managers.
Fullarton's arrival came in mid-January following the sacking of Moniz, who had lasted only half a season before being shown the door. His reign so far has failed to lift the Magpies up the table, and currently they are on a run of five games without a win, having gained only a 0-0 draw against basement side Dagenham and Redbridge to their name during that time. At present they have no firm bidders, although Nottinghamshire Golf and Country Club owner Alan Hardy and an unnamed Danish billionaire are being linked in the media with interest in the Meadow Lane club.
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