Cornard sale at ‘delicate’ stage

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THE SALE of Cornard United has now reached a “delicate stage”, it emerged this week.

Current owner and manager Chris Symes still won’t reveal the identities of the potential buyers as he awaits FA and Suffolk clearance for the disposal of United which must have limited company status before any sale is allowed.

Two people have offered to put their money on the table, he told the Free Press. Both already have links with non-league football.

“The sale has now reached a delicate stage,” said Symes

Whoever lands the Rigeons First Division club will net the clubhouse, grandstand, lights and very good facilities for £25,000 – only half what Symes paid when investing his redundancy money to take over United 17 years ago.

The land at Blackhouse Lane remains in the ownership of Great Cornard parish council.

Before landing there the much-travelled coach and manager had built a reputation and admiration as he created a CV with the names of Scottish First Division Arborath, Chelmsford City, Bury, Braintree, Halstead, Tiptree, Wivenhoe and Tiptree on it.

In his very first week of coaching Arbroath (his wife is Scottish), the minows had beaten the mighty Rangers 3-2 at Ibrox.

He counts Sir Alex Ferguson, Walter Smith, Howard Kendall and England’s 1966 World Cup winners Geoff Hurst and Nobby Stiles among those he has joined on coaching courses.

Symes, who boasts of having done every job at Cornard, from manager to secretary, barman to DJ, says he’s reduced the club debts from £48,000 but is struggling with the final £5,000.

He turns 65 next month and plans to spend more time with his six grandchildren.But the lure of football just won’t go away for the Rigeons long-serving manager.

He says he’s likely to take up an offer from Braintree United, where he had been one of its most successful managers, to become part of their backroom team as they look forward to their first season in the Blue Square South Premier, having been South Champions last season.

Ironically, Cornard host Braintree is a pre-season friendly on July 11.