It looks like the West Ham bidding carousel will finally stop, but with the only bidder standing is David Sullivan and David Gold. Sitting on his cash from selling Birmingham City earlier this year (as well as his porn empire), he’s been the model of patience as he’s watching the Premier League roll through a financial meltdown.
What happened to the other bidders? Is it true Sullivan just wants to buy the team to fire Zola?
West Ham currently has debt of £110 million. The other solid bid was from Tony Fernandes, relying on him taking on a larger than acceptable amount of debt combined with wanting full control to turn the thing around. The report that Massimo Cellino of the Italian football club Cagilari put together an investment team to place a solid bid seems to be unfounded.
That leaves the Davids, who plan on buying a 51% stake with plans to buy up the other shares over time (if the investors need to liquidate).
The other end of this bidding war will be the manager of the West Ham squad. Fernandes is a fan of Italian Gianfranco Zola, while the Davids wish to send him packing and replace him with recent Man City leader Mark Hughes. I’m not sure if a new manager in mid-season will result in any quick fix, but maybe they are hoping they can hold on this year, and get it back on track in the off-season. After all, they do have a record of fixing broken clubs (once is luck, twice coincidence).