ILYAS Khan has again urged Accrington Stanley to open dialogue with him after warning that the club will face serious financial problems for some time to come – even if they manage to avoid a winding up order in the next few weeks.
Khan will be at a private meeting of the Accrington Stanley Supporters’ Fund tonight and has concerns that the club’s debts extend beyond the £308,000 they owe to HM Revenue and Customs, which relates to a previous tax bill and must be paid by late October if the Reds are to avoid extinction.
Despite admirable fund-raising efforts, the last published total of the ‘Save Our Stanley’ appeal remains at just under £80,000 so the club faces a tall order to raise all the money before they have to return to the High Court.
And Khan, who already owns a 12 per cent stake in Stanley as well as being the benefactor behind the Supporters’ Fund, maintains his belief that the only solution is a share issue – even though the club are against the idea because it could mean new owner Dave O’Neill losing control.
The fund repeated its £250,000 offer to buy new shares when the tax deadline became public three weeks ago, having already given the club a £25,000 interest-free loan specifically to help pay the bill during the summer.
The investment banker, who has not yet received a response from the club, said: “I think they are hoping to raise as much money as they can at the moment and then see where they are.
“I wish them well with that but what I ask for is transparency.
“I just hope that sanity prevails and they realise that a share issue is the only way out of this situation because the debt is not just £300,000 - that is only the first part of it.”
Khan, who this week saved the Stanley women’s team from closure and has also helped the club with match sponsorship in recent times, has also repeated his intention to match any donation to the ‘Save Our Stanley’ appeal from current directors – something that may yet prove necessary to stave off winding up proceedings.