Time for the administrators to set the record straight

Time for the administrators to set the record straight

OVF founder Rob Fielding says that following the recent comments from the Football League, he thinks “it’s high time the administrators justified their large fees and issued a statement”…

Rob Fielding writes

A lot of people care about Port Vale FC and many of them are concerned about the latest story in the Sentinel newspaper.

Rob Fielding has been a Vale fan for 31 years and has been editing OVF since 1996. These are his personal views

Many people expected Keith Ryder’s takeover to be completed this week, but according to the newspaper, it looks set to drag on.

More worryingly, it quotes a Football League spokesman as stating that it “continues to await a response to the request” (for more information on the business plan) which was requested nearly three weeks ago.

Some people are urging calm, others are leaping to conclusions, but one thing is certain – a lot of fans are confused and concerned right now.

Many are requesting a response to the League comments from Mr Ryder, the Supporters Club and the football club itself.

I do think it’s fair enough to ask for one of the parties to comment. Silence makes fans (or customers as they would be called in many other sectors) feel like they are being treated with contempt, that the people in power don’t feel it’s worth their while to keep them informed of their progress and perhaps worst of all –  it fuels speculation and the rumour mill.

Questions such as – “Is that the true picture or have the Football League put some spin on it?” – and – “Why have the club and Mr Ryder not responded some 21 days after they were asked to do so?” – and – “When will this be resolved? Or even, will this be resolved?” are legitimate questions right now.

However, I do not think it is fair to request a statement from the Supporters Club – whilst they do an excellent job protecting fans’ rights; they are not involved in this process, so it is not right to ask them to comment.

So that leaves the three key players in this issue – the Football League, buyer Keith Ryder and the club’s administrators.

I would also not expect a comment directly from Mr Ryder as previous statements by him have come via the club’s administrators and the Football League have issued some comments to the Sentinel.

That leaves administrators Begsbie Traynor…

Right now, Port Vale FC is controlled by them. They approved Mr Ryder’s bid and they have issued previous statements both by themselves and on behalf of Mr Ryder.

So, I think it’s high time the administrators justified their large fees and issued a statement.

Of course, legal rules and regulations may mean any statement may just be a “we are bound by a confidentiality agreement not to speculate, but we can assure fans we are working with the League and we are hopeful of a quick resolution” but even a bland statement shows that the administrators want to keep the fans informed and may calm some fears.

As I’ve said in previous columns, fans are Port Vale’s customers, the club’s life blood and are by the whole, sick and tired of being left in the dark by the club’s previous owners.

It’s time the club’s administrators treated the club’s customers with respect and give the fans some public reassurances that all is well at Vale Park.


  1. couldn’t have put it better myself.

    lets have some information please and make it quick.

  2. I think the clue in the reason for delays is the fact that solicitors are providing information. Whatever these legal people do they do not rush whilst racking up huge fees.

  3. Why should the administrators start making statements of this nature? They don’t have to answer to the fans of the club. They don’t give a **** about the fans and why should they?

    We should be thankful that the administrators saw it fit to facilitate the club in coming out of administration, especially after being involved in the previous administration 10 years ago which points towards the idea that we’re not a viable going concern. Most companies are liquidiated in this situation so hold tight and stop causing unnecessary panic.

    If anyone who reads this has the qualifications or experience to be an administrator of a business then feel free to post. I suspect that not many people will respond to that request, which might point towards the reason behind the fees (which you assume are high despite failing to investigate the going rate for such a service).

  4. Author


    I didn’t say that the administrators HAD to make a statement, I simply argued that I think that SHOULD make a statement. They have responsibility for running the club and surely part of that responsibility is keeping the fans and for that matter the general public informed of how the administration is going.

    As for the costs, it’s common knowledge how much the city council have put in to allow the administrators to operate the club. I am not saying that Begsbie Traynor are cheaper or indeed more expensive than other such fims, merely that administrators, in general, are expensive services.

    Rob Fielding

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