West Brom the subject of possible takeover interest from up to SIX parties… but the effects of the coronavirus pandemic means under-fire owner Guochuan Lai may struggle to get his £150m asking price
- West Brom are the subject of takeover interest from up to six different parties
- Current owner Guochuan Lai wants £150m but will struggle to achieve that
- The Chinese businessman will likely take lower offer after coronavirus effects
West Brom are the subject of possible takeover interest from up to six parties but owner Guochuan Lai may struggle to achieve his £150million asking price for the club.
Sportsmail understands Albion have already held talks with at least three of the groups, two of which are based in the United States, and discussions are ongoing.
Lai bought the club from Jeremy Peace for about £200m in 2016 but the effects of the coronavirus pandemic means he is highly unlikely to recoup that outlay. To conclude a deal, Lai may have to accept a fee closer to the £100m mark.
West Brom are the subject of takeover interest of up to six parties with discussions ongoing
Owner Guochuan Lai has £150m asking price for club, but may have to accept figure of £100m
The Chinese businessman’s aim is for Albion to be self-sufficient, meaning they had a transfer budget of only about £25m – plus whatever could be recouped from sales – during the last window, following promotion from the Championship.
That has caused tension behind the scenes, with boss Slaven Bilic desperate for improved funds to give his side a better chance of survival. Albion have yet to win this season and have collected only three points from their opening nine matches, ahead of their vital clash with fellow strugglers Sheffield United at The Hawthorns.
Bilic’s position looked vulnerable before the international break but his side performed very well against Tottenham and Manchester United, despite the narrow defeats. Even so, the next two games – both winnable home fixtures against the Blades and Crystal Palace – look pivotal for their prospects.
There has been tensions behind the scenes with Slaven Bilic desperate for more funds
Bilic said: ‘A win would have a massive psychological effect. It’s the same for them and it is worth more than three points in this situation.
‘It gives you everything if you look at the bigger picture: it gives you big momentum, big motivation. Now is the time to do it and that’s why we are talking about such a big game for both sides.’