Former India captain Bhaichung Bhutia is not “very surprised” at his former club Bury FC being expelled from the English football league (EFL), following its failure to resolve financial woes or find a new buyer.
Bhutia played 37 times for Bury - one of English football’s oldest clubs - between 1999 and 2002, scoring three goals.
“It’s very sad and unfortunate. They have been having financial issues for quite some time. I am not very surprised by this development. I saw this coming,” Bhutia told IANS over phone.
“Lot of the clubs in England are having financial issues. It’s very unfortunate that Bury FC has been taken out of the league,” said the iconic footballer from Sikkim.
Besides Bury, fellow third-tier side Bolton Wanderers is also in acute financial crisis forcing the EFL to give it 14 days to resolve it situation or face the same outcome.
Bhutia said he had observed financial instability even during his time at the club.
“When I was there, there was financial problem. After Neil Warnock left, we had a player-cum-coach as manager due to financial problems. A senior player was tasked to manage the side,” Bhutia said.
“There were no payment issues. But they could not get in new players. They had to sell some good players for the club to sustain,” he added.
Bury is the first team to drop out of the EFL since Maidstone’s liquidation in 1992. It was expelled after spending 125 years in the football league.
It failed to be in the top flight of English football since 1929 but was in the second tier as recently as 1999.
Things turned ugly for Bury as despite winning promotion to the third tier last season, it was handed a 12-point deduction after struggling to clear some of its debts.
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