New consortium plots Portsmouth purchase

A new consortium led by chief executive Peter Storrie has been formed to try to buy Portsmouth from the Premier League club's owner Alexandre Gaydamak, the club said on its website on Wednesday. Portsmouth announced on July 21 that an agreement in principle had been reached to sell the club to Sulaiman Al-Fahim of the United Arab Emirates, but a month on, its future is still unclear. "The group (headed by Peter Storrie) is very positive about the talks and are confident that the deal can be completed," the club said in a statement. "Sulaiman Al-Fahim may partner the new consortium through Al Fahim Asia Associates. "The necessary Premier League regulations and requirements regarding beneficial ownership will be complied with." The statement concluded by saying no further comment would be made by the club until any purchase is complete. Portsmouth, who started the new season with a 1-0 home defeat by Fulham on Saturday and have been widely tipped by bookmakers to be relegated, have been forced to sell a number of their best players to reduce their debts. Plans for a new stadium have been shelved because of the debts. Al-Fahim, a board member of the Abu Dhabi United Group for Development and Investment, fronted the bid from Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed al-Nahyan for Manchester City last year and was due to become Portsmouth's chairman when his takeover was complete. Last month Al-Fahim passed the Premier League's "fit and proper" test for prospective club owners and was quoted as saying he hoped to deliver success to the south coast club. Chief executive Storrie said at the time the takeover was great news for the fans.