Sky TV’s Jeff Stelling says he is willing to invest into his beloved Hartlepool United

Jeff Stelling
Jeff Stelling

TV presenter Jeff Stelling has said he would be willing to put his own money into Hartlepool United if the supporters trust get involved in running the club.

The Soccer Saturday host and honorary president of Hartlepool United said he is waiting to see if a new investor can be found before putting his own finances into the club.

A fan appeal to raise £200,000 to prevent the club going into administration by January 25 has now reached over £25,000.

Speaking on the BBC Tees breakfast show, Jeff said if the £200,000 can be raised by fans it would make the club more attractive to potential buyers.

He said: “I know people will ask about my money and that’s when I will come forward.

“I can’t afford to run the football club on my own, but will certainly put money into the football club if the supporters trust are running it that’s for sure.

“I’m really hopeful that we will have a new investor in place in the not too distant future.

“If that does not happen the supporters trust have plans in place.”

Jeff did not specify how much he would be willing to put in.

He added: “One of my issues at the moment is I haven’t seen the books.

“I know people who have seen the books have been shocked by what they have seen.”

Hartlepool United Supporters Trust says it has viable plans and access to funding which could help secure the safety of the club should any investors look to form a partnership with it.

The trust stressed it would only work with buyers who share their vision to create “a sustainable and successful community club”.

Jeff told BBC Tees he shares the trust’s reservations about giving fan raised money to the current administration.

He said: “If we raise £200,000 we want to make sure it’s put to correct use, not good money following bad, that it’s used to pay wages and such like.”

Jeff said he is in contact with one potential investor who he said is willing to put “significant amounts” into Pools.

In a statement released last night, Hartlepool United said it has worked tirelessly to find a new owner in recent months and that work was continuing.

The club appealed for as many genuine people as possible to join together to buy the club but say if a consortium or a buyer cannot be found soon administration is a very real threat.