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Bolton Nuts » BWFC » Bolton Wanderers News » Bolton ready to fight EFL appeal on five-point suspended penalty

Bolton ready to fight EFL appeal on five-point suspended penalty

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Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
Wanderers are in the process of examining the EFL’s argument against their five-point suspended penalty in preparation for a second independent disciplinary hearing.

Paperwork has now been passed on by the league, detailing why they feel the original punishment, also decided by an independent three-person panel for failing to fulfil fixtures against Brentford and Doncaster, was too lenient.

Their case is being scrutinised by Bolton’s new Chief Operating Officer, Andy Gartside, and his legal team and the club has vowed to fight any extra punishment “vehemently” if the verdict is changed.

Wanderers chief executive Emma Beaugeard said she “struggled to find logic” in the EFL’s appeal but is keen to see the matter resolved as quickly as possible.

She also bears no ill-feeling towards other clubs who have pressured the league into calling for stronger punishment.

“The truth is, we want it all done and dusted,” she told The Bolton News. “We want it over.

“I can’t pretend that if the boot was on the other foot and it was another club that I wouldn’t be making noise if it would help our cause. It’s a dog eat dog world, so of course they are doing it.

“We realise that this is a precedent to be set and that the EFL needs undebatable governance. I think that it is a work in progress at the moment, an unfinished product, so we will wait and see what they come up with soon.”

New owners, Football Ventures, say they have a fully-funded three-year plan at Wanderers and insist there are contingencies in place for Bolton to be playing in either League One or League Two next season.

Beaugeard disputes suggestions, however, that the consortium is looking to do things ‘on the cheap’. “We want to operate this football club properly and we want it to be sustainable but do not mistake that for a lack of ambition,” she said. “We are hugely ambitious people.

“We are not trying to do this for 50 pence and see if we will be successful.

“There are things we can’t control. We have done all the complaining and the sobbing but it isn’t going to change things – we have to deal with them. And while I love Plan A, it’s wonderful and fleshed out, there is a Plan B, even if it isn’t as exciting.

“If what happens with the EFL contributes to us playing League Two football next season then our priority would be to immediately bounce back and go up again.

“If we stay in League One – and I think we can – then our priority becomes reaching the Championship.

“We know it is an incredibly difficult ask to stay in the division this year, we are very realistic in that, and the result against Accrington the other week was maybe a couple of steps back, a reality check.”

A six-month report from administrators dealing with the Bolton Wanderers Football Athletic Company, which used to hold the club’s ‘Golden Share’ with the EFL, was released last week, detailing several secured and unsecured debts.

With the administration still incomplete the exact amount of debt which will be passed on to Football Ventures Whites Limited is, as yet, unclear.

“That hasn’t been confirmed at this moment in time,” Beaugeard said. “We have parameters but there is no confirmation of the final figure.

“We have always been aware of those amounts but administration takes an awfully long time to crunch through in the background, so it’s just going through its processes. There is nothing in there which surprises or shocks us or that we weren’t prepared for. It’s an ongoing process.”


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