Burnley takeover expected to be concluded by weekend

Burnley are expected to go into the New Year with new owners with ALK Capital's takeover imminent,
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Turf Moor

The protracted sale to American Investors ALK Capital has been discussed for around 14 months, but it is expected a deal will be completed before Sunday's home clash with Fulham.

ALK managing partner Alan Pace and his team have arrived up north to conclude talks, but won’t be at this evening's game with Sheffield United, with no access to the club permitted until the deal is fully completed.

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There had been an outside chance could the deal could have been announced before the game at Leeds United on Sunday, but the paperwork was not fully completed.

Pace has since returned to the UK, in order to seal the takeover.

A week ago, a rival consortium, fronted by sports lawyer Chris Farnell and Egyptian businessman Mohamed Elkashashy officially withdrew their offer, with ALK Capital confident they were closing in on a deal, as they waited for the final sign off from all parties on the terms of the deal and full Premier League approval.

Farnell and El Kashashy had felt they were still very much in the frame, having signed a Sales and Purchase Agreement (SPA) and provided proof of funding.

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They had been waiting on the Premier League’s owners and directors test, which they felt was the final hurdle to clear, and were hopeful of news in that respect at the end of November or beginning of December.

However, they lost patience after going six weeks without any contact with Clarets chairman Mike Garlick.

ALK had stolen a march, that respect, having themselves declared in late November: “The process remains ongoing, but talks are in a happy place", showing their finger was again on the pulse as regards the club, using Burnley fan Jordan North's phrase which he used during trials on I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here!

There was then a confidence that the deal could be completed before Christmas, but it looks like Sean Dyche will now receive a welcome boost for his transfer plans in the January window.

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In November 2019, Pace, Citi's global head of securities services sales, left the US bank after 11 years, with hopes of investing in a Premier League club.

Earlier in 2019, Pace had set up ALK Capital with US businessman Dave Checketts, and was keen on buying Sheffield United.

Pace and Checketts were part of the team that established MLS franchise Real Salt Lake back in 2004 - Pace served as interim president and alongside Checketts helped negotiate links with Real Madrid.

Checketts has also worked with basketball team, the Detroit Pistons, and was involved with another NBA franchise, New York Knicks, as well as ice hockey side New York Rangers, when he served as chief executive of the firm that owned the two.

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One of ALK's first investments was AIScout, a fully automated talent identification platform for professional organisations to scout amateur players worldwide.

​The website states: "Artificial intelligence allows scouts to find, analyse, score, rate, benchmark & scout players technical, athletic, cognitive & psychometric ability."