BURY face their day of destiny with the EFL as they need to come up with proof they can play the whole season or they will be thrown out of the league.
The 134-year-old club have until 11.59pm tonight to show they have funds in place or they will have their licence revoked by the league.
That would see them immediately thrown out of the professional game and the EFL maintain they cannot give any further time to the Bury.
How have Bury got in this position and what do the EFL want?
Bury have been fighting against financial problems for several years, and were taken over by businessman Steve Dale last December to save them from going bust.
Dale bought the club for just £1 – but since then there have been a string of unpaid bills to companies while players and staff have also missed out on wages.
Over the summer, the EFL sought assurances and proof that the Shakers were in a position to be able to play the entire 2019/2020 League One season.
Despite repeated attempts, Dale has been unable to come close to showing the finances are in place as required.
In an effort to give the club more time, the EFL have suspended their first five league matches of the season and also the Carabao Cup tie with Sheffield Wednesday.
But they cannot continue the temporary measures for the fairness of the rest of the competition, and issued a deadline of August 23 for proof of funds or they will strip them of their licence in the EFL.
That deadline will pass at 11.59pm today.
Who is Steve Dale?
Steve Dale is a businessman who took over control at Bury in December 2018, buying the club from former chairman Stewart Day for £1.
A worrying 43 of the 51 companies Dale has been associated with have been liquidated.
Dale promised to work closely with the community to ensure the club became financially viable after years of cash problems.
The EFL have admitted they did not put him through the usual process of due diligence when he took control because the club's future was under threat at the time.
Dale now wants to sell the club, and initially came up with an asking price of £2million. He has since dropped his demands to £810,000 for his "hard work".
There are three interested groups looking to buy Bury, but Dale has so far failed to agree a deal with any of them.
He is now thought to be willing to accept an initial payment of £560,000 to relinquish control, with Bury saddled with overall debts of £9million.
If Bury are expelled, what does it mean for League One during the 2019/20 season?
The EFL have decided Bury's record from the current season will be expunged – which current stands at five matches suspended.
League One would be reduced to a 23 team division for the 2019/20 season, and will return to the usual number of 24 teams next year.
Bury would then have to apply to the Football Association if they remain as a football club, for entry to a league lower down the football pyramid.
What does it mean for League One relegation this year?
In a normal season, four teams are relegated from League One down to League Two.
For the 2019/20 season only, the EFL would reduce the number of relegation places to three.
The number of promotion places up into the Championship remains unchanged.
What does it mean for League Two promotion this year?
In order to return League One to a 24 team division, the EFL need to find one extra side for next season.
That will come in the shape of the club which finishes fourth from bottom of League One this season, rather than an extra side gaining promotion from the league below.
That means the four promotion places from League Two remain unchanged.
This would effectively leave League Two reducing in size to 23 clubs.
How does it affect relegation from League Two and promotion from Conference?
Bury's expulsion would leave the number of professional sides at 91 instead of 92, and that vacant place would effectively become available in League Two.
To combat that, the EFL are still to officially decide how they will fill the space.
The two options would be to reduce the number of sides relegated in the 2019/2020 season, or hand an extra promotion place to the Conference.
While no decision has been made, it is thought that the EFL will decide to reduce the number of relegation places from League Two into the Conference to one, instead of two.
That would leave the Conference promotion structure unchanged.
What happens to Bury if they prove their finances before the deadline?
If the EFL are satisfied the club is solvent, or if a takeover is completed, the club will retain its place in League One as usual.
They will play out the season as planned, and would have to squeeze in the five postponed fixtures between now and the end of the campaign.
Bury were already starting this season with a 12-point deduction for entering into a Company Voluntary Arrangement to avoid a winding-up order.
They would also be facing further potential punishment for failing to fulfil their Carabao Cup fixture against Sheffield Wednesday, who were awarded the tie.
The EFL would then have to decide if further breaches of regulations have taken place in the forcing of the suspension of their opening five matches.
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