Exclusive: 'Now let's get to work' - Wigan Athletic CEO
Wigan Athletic's new CEO Mal Brannigan admits Phoenix 2021 Limited can't wait to get cracking on the task of bringing the good times back to the DW Stadium.
The Bahrain-based group finally received the green light to complete their takeover on Tuesday night, drawing to an end a tortuous nine-month period of administration.
And speaking exclusively to Wigan Today, Brannigan - who has extensive senior management experience at the likes of Derby, Sheffield United and Dundee United - says the hard work has already started to right the many wrongs inflicted on the club since last summer.
“It kind of feels like it’s gone on for such a long time," he said. "And yet you look at it, and it hasn’t actually been that long.
"I just think we’ve needed to be patient from our point of view to see it through. But then you compare that to the patience of the club’s supporters...which has been tested beyond belief in comparison to us owners.
"The good thing is we’re now on, and we can finally start to work at the football side of things, and put down some solid foundations with regards to moving forward.
"That will take a lot of time, we’ve obviously got to get used to the club, and understand it.
"We think we’ve got a fairly good idea already, having done so much due diligence over the last year."
And although they only became frontrunners after the Spanish bidders dramatically fell out of the picture at the beginning of January, Brannigan says the Bahrainis were interested right from the outset.
“We started our due diligence at the beginning of the process, before there was an exclusivity period given to another group," he revealed.
"We were then given the opportunity to take it back on board, and possibly get back involved in terms of taking over, at the beginning of January.
"Since then, we’ve worked hard in the background, we’ve completed our due diligence, and we’re very happy with what we’re getting.
"Obviously we’d have been happier to see it as a Championship club, and it’s very unfortunate circumstances that have seen us given the opportunity to come into the football club.
"But an opportunity it is, and we’re going to make sure we grasp it with both hands, and take this football club back to where it should be, built on firm foundations.
"It was a football club that had been on the ownership radar for a very long period of time...that obviously only came about due to the club being placed into administration.
"What was made very clear is that this wasn’t going to be a speculative purchase. It was very much a ‘targeted club’."
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