Businessman Methven launches Oxford United takeover

Charlie Methven is leading a group of businessmen who want to take charge of Oxford United

Charlie Methven is leading a group of businessmen who want to take charge of Oxford United

First published in U's News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Sports Editor. Call me on 01865 425451

The leader of a group of Oxfordshire businessmen who have launched a takeover bid for Oxford United, says they have the financial muscle to take the club forward.

Charlie Methven confirmed last night that talks have taken place between his consortium and U’s owner Ian Lenagan.

However, the United supporter doubted they were the frontrunners, with a rival group, led by Mark Ashton, believed to still be in pole position to take control.

Methven, who has been working in an advisory role with the U’s, says his group have spoken to Lenagan and will provide him with an “alternative option”.

“We approached the owner about a month ago and indicated that if the club came up for sale, we would be interested,” Methven said.

“We held conversations that were both friendly and constructive.

“Those conversations have dried up in recent weeks, I am not sure exactly why, but it might indicate that somebody is in a stronger position than us.”

He added: “In previous years when Oxford United have been in difficulties, there has only been one offer on the table.

“I do not believe this is healthy, and so we are keen to provide an alternative option.

“We have raised significant funds, and feel the amount would be sufficient.

“However, we could have more funds as a back-up if needed.

“We have given a firm indication we would be interested, and believe Ian was grateful for that interest.”

The situation has arisen due to speculation the United chairman is unwilling to continue pouring money into a club which has lost more than £1m for two successive years.

The latest available accounts, which cover the 12 months up to the end of June 2013, show Lenagan’s total investment, through his Woodstock Partners Ltd company, was in excess of £6m.

Methven is hoping his group’s affinity with Oxford United could work in their favour.

“I have, and remain, a major supporter of what the Lenagans have done,” Methven said.

“They have put a number of very good things in place at the club, and I was concerned – and still am – that whoever comes in, if they are an unknown quantity, won’t be the best people to complete those things.”

Methven was appointed as a trustee of the Oxford United Youth and Community Sports Trust in May 2011 and last year played a key role in setting up fans’ group the Yellow Army.

His name was revealed in a statement from supporters’ trust OxVox, whose calls for Lenagan to break his silence and put fans in the picture of developments have fallen on deaf ears.

The U’s owner has still to return any calls from the Oxford Mail or reply to any of our requests for an interview.

Our top stories:

The £1.6bn investment that ‘would keep us at the global cutting edge’

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Thursday 2nd July 2015

AMBITIOUS proposals for £1.6bn of transport and development schemes in Oxfordshire have been unveiled by a partnership of businesses, universities and councils.

Rally held outside Bodleian Library to support Greek people and oppose austerity

Oxford Mail: Greek Solidarity Rally

7:49pm Thursday 2nd July 2015

ABOUT 40 Oxford residents attended a rally outside the Bodleian Library in solidarity with the people of Greece today.

Queues on A34 southbound after crash near Peartree Interchange

Oxford Mail: A34 traffic alert

5:48pm Thursday 2nd July 2015

DRIVERS are facing delays as an accident has blocked one lane of the A34 Western By Pass Road southbound.

Group of men sexually assaults teenage girl in Wheatley

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

5:29pm Thursday 2nd July 2015

A TEENAGE girl was confronted by a group of men and sexually assaulted in Wheatley in the early hours of this morning, [2/7] police said.

More Tunisia beach massacre victims repatriated at RAF Brize Norton

Oxford Mail:

4:04pm Thursday 2nd July 2015

The bodies of nine victims of the Tunisian beach massacre have been returned to the UK, as the final British death toll was confirmed at 30.

UPDATE: Missing Stephen Gray from Abingdon found

Oxford Mail:

10:59am Thursday 2nd July 2015

A MAN from Abingdon who went missing has been found.

Consultation launched to decide future of Chipping Norton care unit

Oxford Mail: New Oxfordshire county council logo

2:11pm Thursday 2nd July 2015

CHIPPING Norton residents have been given a choice between a care home trust taking over the town's intermediate care unit or losing it completely.

Thunder, lightning and hail predicted for Oxfordshire on Friday

Oxford Mail: After the heatwave comes the thunderstorms: 'Yellow Alert' as heavy rain forecast

10:50am Thursday 2nd July 2015

THE glorious weather will come to an abrupt end as thunderstorms and heavy rain were forecast for tomorrow.

It’s hotter than Rio as Oxfordshire sweats it out in a sizzling 31C

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

THE county sizzled in the sweltering heat yesterday, but experts have warned that the good weather may not last long.

Man sectioned for kitchen knife attack on father

Oxford Mail: Oxford Crown Court

9:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

A FATHER whose mentally ill son tried to stab him to death has said he bears no ill will towards his attacker.

Regiment leaves Germany for new county home

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

A REGIMENT based in Germany has said farewell to its barracks as it begins the move to Bicester.

Cowley Road Carnival disappointment as organisers set earlier finish

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

WITH only three more days to go, the countdown to Cowley Road Carnival has well and truly begun.

Bicester Community Hospital is officially opened

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

STAFF, patients and volunteers joined together to celebrate the official opening of Bicester’s Community Hospital yesterday.

Now eagerly-awaited Westgate centre can begin to take shape

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 2nd July 2015

THE CONSTRUCTION phase has begun on the new Westgate centre after the last remaining parts of the old car park were finally demolished.

Comments (8)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

3:39pm Fri 27 Jun 14

Oxokuba says...

Sounds like a well intentioned effort from Mr Methven but it sounds like a group of boys wanting to own a car they can't really afford to run. If the other interested party is the guy who spent a brief time at Watford&Wycombe and who doesn't appear to have made any friends at either club then I'd prefer Mr Methvens involvement than another Kassam clown. You can't help but love the tortured journey our club has taken us!!
Sounds like a well intentioned effort from Mr Methven but it sounds like a group of boys wanting to own a car they can't really afford to run. If the other interested party is the guy who spent a brief time at Watford&Wycombe and who doesn't appear to have made any friends at either club then I'd prefer Mr Methvens involvement than another Kassam clown. You can't help but love the tortured journey our club has taken us!! Oxokuba
  • Score: 15

4:19pm Fri 27 Jun 14

Headington Jim says...

When he first took over FK promised he would take us on a journey and he's still taking for a ride now!
When he first took over FK promised he would take us on a journey and he's still taking for a ride now! Headington Jim
  • Score: 18

6:07pm Fri 27 Jun 14

happyharryhardon says...

If we get investment in to the club or a takeover are they going to do anything about the FACT that we have the smallest wage budget in the football league, because if we want promotion you have to by good players.
If we get investment in to the club or a takeover are they going to do anything about the FACT that we have the smallest wage budget in the football league, because if we want promotion you have to by good players. happyharryhardon
  • Score: 3

11:07pm Fri 27 Jun 14

The Black Prince was off-side says...

Charlie Methven is a life time oxford supporter who despite running a global pr company from london gives an extraordinary amount of time to the u's at grassroots level; that alone shows real commitment. When he is not abroad he can be seen at every home match with his kids working behind the scenes. He has unbelievable contacts and everyone should get behind him if IL has lost the appetite to move our club forward. We certainly don't want another chancer who wants the ego of owning a football club. Having said that the first priority has to be freeing us of a £500k annual ball and chain rent
Charlie Methven is a life time oxford supporter who despite running a global pr company from london gives an extraordinary amount of time to the u's at grassroots level; that alone shows real commitment. When he is not abroad he can be seen at every home match with his kids working behind the scenes. He has unbelievable contacts and everyone should get behind him if IL has lost the appetite to move our club forward. We certainly don't want another chancer who wants the ego of owning a football club. Having said that the first priority has to be freeing us of a £500k annual ball and chain rent The Black Prince was off-side
  • Score: 7

8:10am Sat 28 Jun 14

Brenda Jackson says...

The way fk is cosying up to oxvox should be a warning, he's not in the habit of being chummy- unless it means his wealth grows because of it. The key to all these take over talks lies with the stadium and the land surrounding it, occ, oufc and other parties see the potential here to amass profits and build much needed housing, oufc should be wary of thisand the fact they hold an ace card by their leasing of the stasdium.
The way fk is cosying up to oxvox should be a warning, he's not in the habit of being chummy- unless it means his wealth grows because of it. The key to all these take over talks lies with the stadium and the land surrounding it, occ, oufc and other parties see the potential here to amass profits and build much needed housing, oufc should be wary of thisand the fact they hold an ace card by their leasing of the stasdium. Brenda Jackson
  • Score: 1

8:19am Sat 28 Jun 14

bigchet says...

sounds like a promising development on the surface so lets hope that it progresses favourably and the necessary finances are available . this period of uncertainty may well have an effect on player recruitment so lets hope it is resolved as quickly as possible. and i think that thanks are due to ian leneghan for his considerable financial support.
sounds like a promising development on the surface so lets hope that it progresses favourably and the necessary finances are available . this period of uncertainty may well have an effect on player recruitment so lets hope it is resolved as quickly as possible. and i think that thanks are due to ian leneghan for his considerable financial support. bigchet
  • Score: 3

9:26am Sat 28 Jun 14

howardl says...

Lenegan!!!!
Lenegan!!!! howardl
  • Score: -3

9:19pm Mon 30 Jun 14

JamesSmythe says...

Whilst I don't doubt his motives, I do hope that Mr. Methven has moved on from the days when he poured condescending vitriol on anyone who dared to disagree with his views on the old 'This is United' forum back in the day...
Whilst I don't doubt his motives, I do hope that Mr. Methven has moved on from the days when he poured condescending vitriol on anyone who dared to disagree with his views on the old 'This is United' forum back in the day... JamesSmythe
  • Score: 2

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree