AFTER the Football Ventures consortium was officially unveiled as Wanderers’ preferred bidder yesterday, the size of the task at hand was clearly evident as the team returned to pre-season training.

Phil Parkinson, Steve Parkin and the backroom staff were all present for the first session back after the summer break.

Jason Lowe was present, completing a full recovery from the ankle injury which ruled him out for the final few games of last season, although Josh Magennis was given extra time off after international duty with Northern Ireland.

We have learned, however, that players and staff had to change at the stadium and then travel across to Lostock because buildings on the site, including the changing rooms and manager offices, were padlocked by Atherton-based company Sibcas last week.

The temporary structures are leased from Sibcas but it is understood that administrators elected against paying a large bill which is owed, preferring instead to put all funds towards staff wages for the time being.

Sibcas declined to comment when contacted by The Bolton News but it is hoped the matter will be rectified quickly once new ownership in confirmed.

That resolution inched closer yesterday as the four-strong group led by Sharon Brittan were given the go-ahead to complete the deal, potentially by the end of this week.

As we went to press there had been no update on the legal action promised by Laurence Bassini to halt the sale process.

Pointedly referring to Bassini's claims at the weekend, Paul Appleton of administrators David Rubin and Partners told the club website that all parties were given an equal chance to make a bid, with ‘full and final’ offers required by June 12.

"We undertook a comprehensive bidding process where all interested parties were given an opportunity to make their best and final offer for the club,” he said.

"Football Ventures made the highest offer by a substantial margin and were also able to show absolute proof and source of funding to match the requirements of the process. They were also able to show the viability of a minimum two-year business plan for the club which was of the utmost importance.

"With the Heads of Terms agreement signed, we now moved towards a Sales and Purchase Agreement and the completion of the deal."