Alan Hardy: Notts County owner regrets buying relegated club

Alan Hardy
Alan Hardy's Notts County were relegated to the National League after losing to Swindon Town on the final day of the season

Notts County chairman Alan Hardy has said he regrets ever buying the relegated club, describing the last six months as "the worst of my life".

The Magpies dropped out of the English Football League for the first time in their history this season.

Hardy has been trying to sell Notts since January, with the club also facing a winding-up petition.

"It is 51-49 call and I have to just come down on the side of regretting it," said Hardy, who took over in 2017.

"It has been a horrendous six months - the worst of my life. On paper it has cost me £35m and I have had this conversation with my wife many times.

"She is not happy - she didn't want me to buy County in the first place."

Notts are due back in the High Court on 5 June to face the winding-up petition, which relates to an unpaid tax bill.

Last month Hardy said he had accepted an offer to buy the club from a "very credible party" but a takeover has yet to be completed.

"My integrity has been battered over the last nine to 12 months," added Hardy, who apologised after he posted a tweet which included a nude image in January. "Everyone's integrity is important to them as a human being.

"I've lost some close friends along the way which was hard to come to terms with.

"I never believed for one minute we were going to get relegated. Notts County have been through a lot previously and escaped and there was an inbuilt confidence we would get there in the end.

"But when you don't, there is that overriding shock and gasping for breath."