New Huddersfield Town chairman Phil Hodgkinson on takeover delay - and putting gossip 'to rest'

NEW HUDDERSFIELD TOWN majority shareholder Phil Hodgkinson has explained the length of time it has taken to complete his 75 per cent purchase of the club - which was officially ratified on Wednesday evening.

New Huddersfield Town chairman Phil Hodgkinson

Hodgkinson and the club had been waiting for clarification from the English Football League (EFL) to confirm his purchase for several weeks, with Dean Hoyle retaining 25 per cent and remaining on the board.

Hodgkinson has a future option to buy the remaining shareholding.

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The deal was publicly announced in early May, pending ratification by the relevant authorities, with lifelong Town fan Hodgkinson to relinquish his involvement with National League club Southport.

John Smith's Stadium

CEO and founder of the PURE Business Group, former season-ticket holder Hodgkinson, who is an FA qualified youth agent and used to work as a football intermediary, said: "It has not actually taken that long. Dean and I - mainly myself - took the decision to announce that we had come to an agreement before the Manchester United game (on May 5).

"Dean was quite comfortable whether we did or not; it was really important for me that Dean and his family had that game in front of the fans. So we had agreed the terms of the deal.

"While Dean and I had agreed everything in principle and exchanged, we had not completed and there is a lot of legal things to go through, disclosures, documents and clarification etc.

"In reality, a lot of things needed to happen post that (day) to get it over the line. It is quite complex and not simple (for) someone to buy a football club. I already owned a football club and was then buying a football club that does not own its own stadium and that there is a separate agreement with Canalside.

"You are talking about having to get ratification of selling my shares at Southport from the National League and then talking about getting ratification from the FA and then talking about the fact that the Premier League felt it was appropriate the Fit and Proper Persons Test was done by the EFL because we had been relegated at that point.

"We did not actually become an EFL club until the seventh of June and the EFL were not back from their annual Conference until the tenth of June. So in reality it has only taken three weeks.

"This is a good chance to put some of the gossip to rest. I did not fail the Fit and Proper Person's Test and my finances were checked by the EFL and everybody is happy. It was purely and surely because (the length of time) we announced early.

"There were delays and it was not straightforward. They were two football clubs involved and two organisations and not one."