'We are committed to restoring ITFC to its former glory' - Johnson on Ipswich Town takeover
- Credit: WPRI.com
Brett Johnson says Ipswich Town's new American owners are 'committed to restoring the club to its former glory'.
Outgoing owner Marcus Evans has written off a sizeable portion of the £100m+ plus debt owed to him as part of what he calls a 'very fair price' - understood to be around £400m - says that the club's new custodians have 'deep pockets' and that he has undergone months of due diligence to ensure this will be a 'marriage made in heaven’.
The vast majority of funds will come from a large US pension fund, understood to be Arizona State's, with further investment being provided by US businessmen Johnson, Berke Bakay and Mark Detmer, the trio who have overseen the success story of Phoenix Rising FC and an exciting new project in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.
Recently appointed Ipswich Town manager Paul Cook will remain in charge of the first team.
"We are humbled and excited to be investing in Ipswich Town, one of the finest clubs in the history of English football," said Johnson, the former FA Cup (1978) and UEFA Cup (1981) champions currently playing third-tier football for a second successive season.
"We are proud of our success on and off the pitch at Phoenix Rising and are committed to restoring ITFC to its former glory. To this end, the first priority is promotion to the Championship and the management team will be given additional funds to strengthen the playing squad.
“The Three Lions (Johnson, Bakay and Detmer) have considerable experience in commerce and marketing, and in the medium-term plan to increase revenue at the club, but the short-term priority has to be the playing side, and we are committed to improving that, all the way from the academy to the first-team."
Town are currently eighth in the League One table, three points adrift of the play-off places heading into their final eight games of the campaign.
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There is opportunity for manager Paul Cook, who Evans has said will stay in charge under the new ownership, to completely rebuild the squad this summer given he has 13 first teamers out of contract and six loan deals expiring.