Cala withdraws his bid to buy Pompey

Joseph Cala
Joseph Cala
Former Pompey striker Eoin Doyle

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Sicilian American businessman Joseph Cala has told The News he has withdrawn his bid to buy Pompey.

Only yesterday Cala said he was ‘95 per cent sure’ to take over at Fratton Park.

The 50-year-old, who founded an underwater hotel firm, said discussions with former owner Balram Chainrai’s company, Portpin, over future securities were holding up the completion of a takeover deal.

But speaking to The News the businessman admitted his bid to buy the south coast club was over.

He said: ‘I am very sad. I will have to take a sabbatical.

‘Pompey for me was the name itself. It’s something I have always loved. When I thought of Pompey, I thought of Pompeii, one of my favourite cities in the world.

‘What really touched me was when I went to the stadium and was watching the fans before the match and they were really behind the club all the way.

‘And when Southampton scored the goal first they never called the players losers. It was really fun.’

CSI administrator Andrew Andronikou said: ‘I am not concerned.

‘We have got other people and we want have don’t to waste any more time with individuals that want to generate column inches.’