Various interested parties have reportedly met the asking price to buy Sunderland from current owner Stewart Donald but the club were concerned about their funding and intentions.
Back in December, Donald announced that he would look to sell the North East club following significant pressure from fan groups.
No deal for the club has yet been done and Madrox Partners, the holding company used by Donald in his takeover in 2018, claimed on Monday that it was impossible to put a timescale on the sale and that it was unlikely a deal would be done this month.
It has been reported that Donald has had discussions with multiple interested parties over the last few months.
In a Q&A for the Sunderland Echo, Phil Smith was pressed on the identity of these potential buyers.
He said: “In short, we know very little.
“The view from the club is that ‘various parties’ have met the asking price, but there were concerns over the funding and the intentions.
“Stewart Donald also said last month that there were a ‘couple’ of parties who seemed to be deemed viable, but that they were ‘pausing for breath’ in light of the current climate.”
Smith added: “It’s a complicated picture, but what we can say is that the ownership looks unlikely to change anytime soon.”
Donald completed his takeover of the club following their relegation to League One in 2018 and his time in charge has not been a particularly successful one.
Sunderland were beaten in the play-off final last season and currently sit seventh, with reports suggesting that the EFL could be set to curtail the 2019/20 campaign.
It is understood that clubs will then be asked to vote on how the season is completed with a weighted points-per-game (PPG) system the favourite, which would likely mean the Black Cats face another season in League One.
Can you remember which Sunderland manager signed each of these 15 players? Have a go now!
It’s interesting to get this insight into the potential sale of Sunderland.
It seems as though the delay to the season has come at a bad time and may discourage any potential buyers.
The Black Cats suffered a four-game winless read prior to the delay and it now looks as if that could be costly if PPG is used to determined the final standings.