Portsmouth: Iain McInnes says football supports Trust takeover

The prospective chairman of Portsmouth believes 'football is on their side' ahead of the court case that will determine the future of the club.

Iain McInnes is one of the investors backing the Pompey Supporters' Trust.

Administrators of the club will this week attempt to force the sale of Fratton Park in order to allow the PST to complete their takeover.

"Football is on our side and wants us to win this case," McInnes told the BBC's Late Kick Off programme.

Who is Iain McInnes?

  • Born 1951, Paulsgrove, Portsmouth
  • First job: Furniture designer at White & Newton
  • Joins electronics company Kenwood, aged 19. Sacked six years later
  • Starts electronic component distribution company and manufacturing company
  • Sells businesses in 1995 with collective turnover of £10.5m
  • First approached by Portsmouth for financial assistance in 1996
  • Turns downs opportunity to become a director of the club
  • Comes out of retirement. Currently runs various electronic companies
  • Current turnover of companies is £18m, with 300 people employed

The start date for the two-day hearing at the High Court in London is expected to be announced this week and Portsmouth-born McInnes has assured fans that whatever the eventual outcome, the club will not fold.

The takeover is dependent on the PST taking ownership of Fratton Park, which is currently controlled by former owner Balram Chainrai via a fixed charge.

The club have been in administration since February 2012 and the Football League has warned they will lose their Golden Share [Football League status] if they do not come out of it before the end of the season.

McInnes has insisted the club will not go bust, even if the court case goes against administrators BDO, because there is an alternative rescue plan.

"We want to protect the future of Portsmouth Football Club," he said.

"Although the future of Portsmouth football club comes hand-in-hand with Fratton Park, if we were to lose for some obscure reason the football ground that we have known and loved for 52 years, [then] there is a plan B, but I am not an liberty to say what that plan B is.

"I can promise you this club will not fold whether we win or lose. We are here to defend a piece of national heritage."

McInnes and his fellow High Net Worth investors have bankrolled the club for several months, a challenge he felt he could not refuse. Meanwhile, ordinary fans are also investing £1,000 each for a share in the club, with over £2m in pledges so far.

"I am not frightened of hard work," said McInnes, who made his money in electronics.

Does our investment come back to us in the way of shares if we win the bid? Yes, and rightly so

Iain McInnes Pompey Supporters' Trust investor

"The reason I am doing this is because I was asked, and also for the past 52 years other than my family, the club is the most important thing in my life.

"The group of us together, a band of brothers if you like, we all took up this challenge to save our football club."

McInnes says the money he and his fellow HNW investors have pumped into the club is a donation and not a loan.

Together they have spent well over a £1m keeping Pompey going in recent months, and says they are not guaranteed anything for it other than a share in the business if they succeed.

"I think it is worth saying exactly how our investment is made, it's a donation," McInnes told BBC Radio Solent.

"Did we expect a large chunk of that to go into legal costs? The answer is no. Has it? Yes.

"Does that money come back to us in the way of shares if we win the bid? Yes, and rightly so, but we are going to put more money in on top of that because of all the money we have spent on legal fees."