Sunderland wait for EFL approval but no time frame placed on the process
The EFL are considering the proposed takeover of Sunderland as a consortium fronted by Stewart Donald prepares to take control.
The terms of a deal have been agreed with Ellis Short, which sees the American clearing the club's internal and external debts. The consortium will in return pay a fee for the club's assets.
Approval from the EFL is the final step in the process but there is no time frame in place. Should the governing body be satisfied with the information presented it could be sealed in a matter of days, though some deals have previously taken weeks to approve.
The Owners' and Directors' test is designed to establish the credibility of 'relevant persons' involved in taking control of a club.
It is incredibly rare for an owner to banned as a result of the test.
Reasons for approval not being granted include unspent criminal convictions, or outstanding disqualifications from the business and sporting worlds. Potential owners are also disqualified should they have overseen unconnected insolvency events at two other football clubs, or two events of insolvency at one.
The rules also prevent any 'relevant person' connected with a takeover from owning another club, something that effects Stewart Donald, currently owner of Eastleigh FC. He has already signalled his intention to relinquish control of the club and will not seek a fee.
After fierce criticism regarding the process the EFL moved to strengthen the test last summer. The changes mean that failure to provide correct information in a declaration could lead to retrospective action.
Donald is fronting a consortium that is believed to include investment from Spanish backers, across others.