Tony O’Driscoll has revealed crunch talks this week could see Hayes & Yeading United come off football’s equivalent of a life-support machine.
While the battle for points to avoid the drop on the field looks to be swinging in United’s favour, Chairman O’Driscoll sounded upbeat at the weekend ahead of a meeting with potential backers about the pounds needed to keep the club in business off it.
O’Driscoll revealed earlier in the year the club needed to find £300,000 to get work on Yeading’s former stadium at Beaconsfield Road restarted and failure to raise the cash would signal the end of the club.
Seven backers have since come forward to pledge £30,000 apiece, leaving United £90,000 short.
However other potential backers have emerged, with sufficient funds to keep the club operating and their money, plus pledges already made, could not only clear debts, but leave O’Driscoll and co back in the black.
“We have managed to source funds elsewhere from other people who really are giving us money to keep us going,” said O’Driscoll at the weekend.
“In the next week I will be sitting down with them because they want to put some money in to get us back to playing at Beaconsfield Road next season.
“We are talking about a different group putting money in and then perhaps those six or seven putting theirs in as well, which would give us so much more.
“It could give us the £300,000 plus more than £100,000 on top. That is not 100 per cent certain until next week, but this is a big week ahead.
“I would like to think if all goes well in the week, we’ll probably have a target of Christmas for moving back to Beaconsfield Road.”
Just how critical a patient United remain in the meantime is born out by the fact only an 11th-hour payment to landlords Maidenhead on Friday secured use of the York Road pitch for Saturday’s 2-0 win over Farnborough, which continued Tristan Lewis’s 100 per cent record since taking over from Phil Babb, and earned him the job until the end of the season.
“We had until yesterday [Friday] to pay and we paid yesterday,” admitted O’Driscoll on Saturday.
“Everyone has been ringing me asking ‘is it right you are behind on the rent?’ and yes, we had been, and I can only apologise, which I did to the Maidenhead chairman.
“He gave us until yesterday to pay or we would not have played.”
United last night played out a goalless draw with Staines Town but could have sent the Swans out of the Conference South with victory at York Road.
Instead it is likely that Nicky Forster's boys will be going down this weekend.