OXFORD UNITED: 'Disappointed' rivals still support the club

Charlie Methven

Charlie Methven

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THE leader of a consortium of Oxfordshire businessmen who had hoped to buy Oxford United has said he is “disappointed” not to have been successful.

Charlie Methven was speaking after it was announced yesterday that businessman Darryl Eales will become chairman of the U’s and now owns 30 per cent of the club.

Together with fellow Oxford United fan and Bridle Insurance owner Stewart Donald, Mr Methven had hoped to buy the club and submitted a formal bid earlier this week.

Speaking to the Oxford Mail yesterday he said: “Obviously from our point of view we are disappointed and we feel that we had a lot to offer but as Oxford United supporters we now want to do as well as possible.

“We are former bidders and current fans and now the hope must be that the club goes from strength to strength. Next season you will still find me in the Yellow Army bar.”

Mr Methven had said he would be interested in moving Oxford United to a new stadium which the club would own, rather than leasing from former owner Firoz Kassam.

When asked what this would mean for the future of the stadium, he said: “I don’t think that’s right for me to comment on. I don’t propose to offer a running commentary on everything they do.

“We should let them get their feet under the table and let them explain what they want to do.”

The Oxford Mail contacted Mr Kassam yesterday but he did not return our call.

Supporters tell of their shock over day's events.

Oxford Mail:

  • ‘I think we all knew someone was going to come in as new owners but it’s just a bit of a shock that Gary Waddock has gone. He didn’t do much when he was here but you could say he was limited with what he had when he came in. Like any club in football, only time will tell with how it goes with the new owner but as long as it’s in the club’s best interests that’s all that matters to me.’ Mark Quainton, 42, from Yarnton.

Oxford Mail:

  • ‘It’s fantastic news from a club point of view to move forward. It needed fresh people upstairs and new investors. I don’t quite understand the change of manager because he hasn’t had an opportunity to do anything with the existing team but we will have to trust in the board.’ Ray Lindsey, 44, from Kidlington, owner of Haymans Fisheries in Oxford.

Oxford Mail:

  • ‘Everything has seemed a bit rushed over the last few weeks. And even though I was not too keen on Gary Waddock in the first place, it was quite shocking to see he will be leaving.’ Tom Thewlis, 22, from Enstone.

Oxford Mail:

  • ‘I am not familiar with the new coach, Michael Appleton, but I suppose you have to feel that Gary Waddock has been very unlucky in his timing.’ Former treasurer of disbanded fan group The 12th Man Trevor Lambert, 63, of Headington.

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