Unrest at Reading, protest plans, consortium quits talks and training ground sold to Wycombe – Fan Banter

Unrest grows at Reading, with more protest plans, a consortium quits talks and the club’s training ground has been sold to Wycombe.

Reading’s Bearwood Park training facility is reportedly set to be sold to league rivals Wycombe Wanderers, as reported by The Athletic on Wednesday night.

Reports of a deal come just days after Dai Yongge issued a statement through Reading FC’s official channels saying that he was ‘open’ to offers regarding the sale of the state-of-the-art training ground.

Yongge has agreed to sell Bearwood Park to Wycombe for around half of the £50million that it cost for Reading to develop and move into from Hogwood back in the 2019/20 season.

A consortium led by ex-Charlton director Leo Rifkind has now quit takeover talks because of the decision to sell Bearwood Park.

Chiron Sports Group – who are based in London and Switzerland and owns a stake in Venezia and also linked up with Didier Drogba launching a team in the electric speedboat series E1 – are now no longer interested in Reading.

They had been warned however when Dai revealed he’d be “evaluating every option to secure sufficient funding” for the club on Monday, including being “open” to the sale of Bearwood Park.

But what has shocked many is the speed in the decision to sell it to Wycombe, who currently sit eight points and four places above Reading in the third tier.

Wycombe have for many years been trying to upgrade their training facility, currently at a basic site in Marlow, which is three miles south of the club’s ground.

Wycombe’s American owner Rob Couhig had invested in improvements at the training ground but space has proved to be limited with reports of a huge film studio to be built in the area, which would further constrain the club.

The Chairboys haven’t had sufficient room for their academy, and that is why Rob Couhig has been looking and planning to build a new facility in nearby Little Marlow.

While Reading’s Bearwood Park would take 30-minutes to get to from Wycombe, the chance to move into one of the best training grounds and academy bases outside the Premier League is clearly something they need, want and have to jump at before someone else does or should something happen to the site.


The Royals are also facing a shortfall for this month with supporters raise thousands to donate to the club in the way of ticket sales.

SEE MORE: Reading fans praise Ruben Selles for what he said on controversial decisions in defeat at Derby

Reading currently sit 18th in League One, five points above the relegation zone but need to pick up points with the potential of more points deductions hanging over them.

They play host to Cambridge at the Select Car Leasing Stadium on Saturday, but before that, protest group Sell Before We Dai plan to peacefully make their feelings known outside Reading’s ground on Friday, voicing displeasure at the latest development. Some however are against plans to protest there.

They said in a statement on Thursday morning: “The news that Reading FC owner Dai Yongge, his sister and fellow owner Dai Xiu Li, and CEO Dayong Pang, are selling our training ground shows that they never intended to sell the club. They’re intent on only one thing – killing Reading FC – a club with a proud 152-year history. This club is now firmly on life support.

“But if Yongge, Xiu Li and Pang are killing the club, then Wycombe Wanderers owner Rob Couhig is an accomplice. He might not have pulled the trigger, but he’s helping the owners to hide the body.

“Selling one of Reading’s key assets makes the club even less attractive to a new owner – and almost certainly scares off potential investors who were already having to contend with Yongge’s unpredictability, all while leaving more chaos for fans, players and staff to endure.

“But questions must be asked.

“To Yongge, Xiu Li and Pang – with a £1 million shortfall staring the club in the face, are they planning on using the funds to keep the club alive, or to run off with them to an off-shore tax haven, leaving Reading FC in an even more perilous situation?

“To Rick Parry and the EFL – who said ‘never again’ after Bury’s demise, but are walking by on the other side while our club is dying in front of them.

“It’s time for action. We’re calling on all Reading fans to gather tomorrow night (Friday) at 6pm outside Adams Park for a peaceful protest – and we’d invite all Wycombe fans who don’t want their club to become known as the new MK Dons to stand with us – because football has an ownership problem.

“We know Reading fans are confused and worried. So are we. But one thing is clear: we will not give up in the fight for the future of our club.”

This is what fans are saying amid unrest at Reading, protest plans, consortium quits talks and the training ground sold to Wycombe…

@DanTheMan__98: Don’t know what I’ll do with myself if there is no Reading Football Club, you can’t just go and support another club, you’ll never have the same love, the same passion and care that you do for RFC, for me there is no other club I’d support. My only Reading ❤️#readingfc

@ValleyFloydFred: If this is true, fair play to Wycombe, they probably just got top-end Championship / Premier League facilities for a fraction of the cost it would have cost them to build something from scratch. Cannot blame anyone other than Dai Yongge. Wycombe doing what’s best for them

@SuburbanBadger: Think this is a mistake. Getting angry at Wycombe Wanderers is not the play here. Their owner is responsible to that club & if they’ve been offered a state of the art training ground at half the price, they’d be doing a disservice to their own club, its staff & fans to reject it.

@naithanxbasra: All behind a protest but 6pm on a Friday evening when everyone has left is going to achieve nothing. Understand fans are powerless atm but surely there is something else?

@cjlsmith87: First time felt that it’s now a Lost cause & club is going to die. Never convinced Dai actually wanted to sell the club or was seriously speaking to buyers. If Wycombe buy it at such short notice they must be paying absolute peanuts. There is literally nothing left, heartbreaking

@WestSussexRam: Wycombe Wanderers again the ambulance chasers. What a classless owner they have. Hoping you get some good news at some point #readingfc 🐑

@davman1971; Ridiculous. Awful, awful situation, but if Wycombe don’t buy it someone else will. There are two parties that deserve your anger – Dai and the EFL. All the best for you, but stoking up an unnecessary rivalry with Wycombe is not going to help anyone. Hope this gets sorted.

@joshbuck5: I support this cause a lot but protesting at Wycombe isn’t the right thing to do I’m afraid. It’s just one club taking advantage of our scenario. Like Luton did with buying Holmes. Just business. Wycombe aren’t the problem

@ginganinga177: Please explain how Wycombe are to blame here?? Dai yongge has put the club in this position alone. Dont shift blame on to anyone else

@MacauleyWeaver: This will achieve fuck all and you know it, Wycombe will do what they want, they don’t care, we need to go for Dai and Pang, target them not Wycombe

@deanocx: On the pitch Saturday, stop EVERY game until the end of season. Deductions are irrelevant now, we are close to the end.

@thesimpsonRFC: The club now no longer owns the stadium, car park, hotel and now the training ground absolutely nothing. This only ends one way, liquation of the football club. R.I.P #readingfc 1871-2024, thanks for everything

@Jdh72Joel: I actually feel sick

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