Sale of Leeds is near completion, confirms owner Bates

The former Chelsea chairman has announced that Bahrain-based investment bank GFH Capital are poised to complete a takeover of the club, as the two parties near an agreement
Leeds United owner Ken Bates announced on Friday that a proposed takeover deal with Bahrain-based investment bank GFH Capital is close to completion.

The two parties began discussion in May, but various formalities – such as GFH providing Bates with the necessary proof of funds to complete the transaction – have delayed the deal.

However, the 80-year-old former Chelsea chairman is now confident that the agreement will be finalised soon.

"It's been a long road, but we are in a good place,” he told the club’s official website.

“Both sides have been in talks over the last few days to finalise this deal. We are keeping focused and hope to complete very soon.”

In a joint statement released by the club and GFH, the latter’s deputy chief executive officer David Haigh warned that there are still issues to be addressed before the sale can be completed.

"With the money in place we are poised to make this deal happen, pending agreements and arrangements which are in the interests of the future of Leeds United - we need to make sure all the finer detail is addressed before trading signatures," he said.

Saleem Patel, GFH’s chief investment officer, also moved to reassure supporters’ concerns over how the company would run the club.

"We understand there is some concern related to how Leeds United would be run under our stewardship,” he said.

"It remains important to be clear that Shari'ah law will not hinder this transaction nor will it affect the future operations of the club.

"Our intention is to provide investment which will facilitate a successful and sustainable future for Leeds United on and off the pitch."