1. ITV Report

Hartlepool United future in doubt as potential buyer withdraws

Hartlepool's future is now in doubt after a potential buyer withdrew his interest. Credit: ITV News

The future of Hartlepool United looks increasingly bleak as a potential buyer has withdrawn his interest.

Hartlepool-born businessman Chris Musgrave had been interested in buying the club, potentially saving it from administration, but decided against a buy after seeing the club's finances.

In a statement Musgrave said:

I have concluded that the financial challenges facing the club are serious indeed, but I have not been able to identify the exact amount of cash I would be required to make available to save the club. It has therefore been impossible for me to prepare a financial rescue package or a plan to deal with the long term, which is disappointing.

No one has ever made money out of this club. That was never my intention and I was prepared to provide finance to the value of over £1.5m, but I am not prepared to sign blank cheques, with no end in sight.

As it stands, I do not intend to provide any funds to the Football Club, for reasons within this statement, but I do hope the club will be saved.

– Chris Musgrave

Hartlepool fans had been encouraged after their match last weekend, a match dubbed 'Save Pools Day', was a sell-out with Middlesbrough fans also turning out to help the club.