Why today could prove pivotal for Stewart Donald's Sunderland takeover

Stewart Donald.
Stewart Donald.

Sunderland are hoping that Stewart Donald’s proposed takeover of the club comes to a resolution today.

Donald is set to meet EFL executives today to provide further assurances regarding his funding capabilities and the proposed sale of Eastleigh.

Eastleigh earlier this week issued a statement confirming that Donald had agreed the sale of the club to existing board members, with the deal now subject to National League approval.

The statement said: “Eastleigh Football Club can confirm that owner and majority shareholder Stewart Donald has agreed to sell the club to the existing board members, along with a number of senior management staff currently working for the club.

“The club has been in discussion with the National League regarding the change of ownership, and we are now awaiting confirmation of their approval before matters can be concluded.”

League rules strictly prohibit one person holding a significant interest in more than one club.

Donald, who is set to become the majority shareholder should the deal be approved, has been encouraged by his dialogue with the EFL thus far and is confident that he has sufficient proof of funds.

He is fronting an international consortium, but will be the primary investor in the club.

Premier League figures have revealed that Sunderland received more than £41 million in parachute payments from the Premier League this season.

The club will receive parachute payments over three seasons with this year’s totalling £41,571,016.

The Premier League signed a new domestic and overseas TV deal for the start of the 2016/2017 season worth more than £8.1 billion.

Part of that TV deal saw a change to the parachute payments, with clubs given payments over three rather than four seasons.

Teams relegated after only one season in the Premier League only get the first two payments. Sunderland received 55% of the equal share of the broadcast revenue paid to the Premier

League clubs. Next season it will be cut to 45% and the third and final payment will be 20%.

Despite that first payment, Ellis Short has continued to fund significant losses and that will be one of Donald’s big challenges should a deal be concluded.