EFL defends decision to approve Reading owner – Reading Today Online

Reading FC

English Football League (EFL) chief executive Trevor Birch explained that Reading owner Dai Yongge ‘passed all requirements’ when taking over the club.

Despite his proposed purchase of Hull City being blocked by the Premier League in 2016, Dai Yongge was allowed by the EFL to complete the takeover of the Royals just a year later.

“At that stage he passed all of our qualification requirements,” said Birch.

“He wasn’t banned by the Premier League, it was a different purchasing organisation structure at Hull.

“There was no disqualification criteria that applied to him and since then he has invested over £200m into the club so it is strange that we’ve got to this point where we’re talking about an owner who has made substantial investment.

“We’ve spoken with relevant fan groups, hopefully to assure them that we are doing all we can to assist in divestment and ensure a new owner is in place.

“We share the fans’ frustrations in trying to bring this to a conclusion. There is only so much we can intervene given UK corporate law and our regulations.

“All we can do is try to encourage the owner to sell and divest his ownership if he hasn’t got the desire to fund the club.

“We know that there are some interested parties so hopefully it will happen in due course.

EFL chief operating officer Nick Craig added :”We understand there are discussions ongoing of how to get sale of the club, the question is how do we get those discussions over the line.”

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