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Bury expelled from Football League; Bolton has 14 days

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This is a monumentally sad day for football.

Bury FC is no longer a member of the Football League, expelled from the league.

One of Bury’s historic rivals, Bolton Wanderers, have only 14 days to avoid that fate.

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For the first time since 1888-89, a season of English football will not include two-time FA Cup winners Bury, the only silver lining that the club was expelled on the heels of a thrilling promotion season.

A late takeover bid collapsed and Bury is now the first club to be expelled from the Football League since 1992. They are the only club to score at least 1,000 goals in each of the top four tiers of England.

As for Bolton, the Wanderers have 14 days to complete a takeover or it, too, will suffer the same fate. Here is the club’s statement, and the hopeful tone overlooks a dire likely pathway.

We note the statement from the EFL lifting the notice of withdrawal of suspension and giving 14 days to find a solution and complete a deal for the sale of the club.

All parties have been in continuous dialogue throughout the day and are working closely together this evening in order to bring a deal to completion. We will continue to  work through the night if necessary.

There will be a further update as soon as possible.

Report: Bolton takeover talks break down

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Bolton Wanderers are in an even more alarming financial position, after reports of potential owner Laurence Bassini missing a deadline on Monday to provide proof of his financial capital.

Bolton’s current owner Ken Anderson made the deadline before the weekend, a weekend which saw Bolton’s match against Brentford postponed as the players are refusing to play due to not having been paid their wages last month. But now, per The Times, it looks as though Bassini won’t become the club’s new owner after all, putting the club in a precarious state.

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It’s a sad state of affairs for Bolton, a once-proud club that was a mid-table side in the Premier League less than a decade ago. The club featured Stuart Holden and later Tim Ream, cementing its American connections, but has now come on very hard times. Relegation has already been confirmed, with the club in 23rd place in the Championship, but it could go into administration or cease to be a club if the team continues to fail to pay its players and staff.

Over the weekend, it was reported that the Championship is compelling Bolton to complete its final two matches against Brentford and Nottingham Forest, even if the first team players refuse to play. That could mean potentially using youth players in what would be a mockery of the game, pitting boys against men because of the league’s bylaws and club’s inability to pay wages that were promised contractually.