This Is Local London1D Louis 'gutted' over Rovers bid (From This Is Local London)

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1D Louis 'gutted' over Rovers bid

This Is Local London: Louis Tomlinson of One Direction is a massive Doncaster Rovers fan Louis Tomlinson of One Direction is a massive Doncaster Rovers fan

One Direction star Louis Tomlinson has said he is "absolutely gutted" that his efforts to step in to take over his beloved Doncaster Rovers had fallen through.

The heartthrob chart-topper said he still hopes to be able to help the League One side "succeed".

In a message to fans posted online, Louis said he would not have benefitted financially from the club if the deal had occurred.

The singer announced last month, after weeks of speculation, that he was teaming up with businessman John Ryan and their takeover was expected to be formalised today.

But efforts to raise enough cash for the deal - through the Crowdfunder.co.uk website - have faltered with only £757,796 of the £2 million target raised by yesterday's deadline from 514 backers.

A statement issued by the Tomlinson Ryan Trust, established by the pair, said the failure to reach their target meant they were unable to meet the Football League's "fit and proper" test for club ownership.

In a series of posts online, Louis wrote: "I'm absolutely gutted the Doncaster Rovers deal is not going ahead. I am desperate for the club to be given the recognition it deserves.

"My passion for Doncaster Rovers remains as strong as ever, and I hope that I can still be involved with the club moving forward.

"And to all the Doncaster Rovers fans, I will do all in my power to help the club succeed. I really do love the club."

He added: "For the record, I insisted contractually I would never earn a penny from DRFC. I simply wanted to help club and community. Still hoping I can."

Louis and Ryan hosted a press conference last month outlining their plans for the takeover and launching the crowd-funding bid.

Those who have pledged cash will not lose out as they do not have to pay up if a project does not meet its target under Crowdfunder's rules.

A spokesman for the investment site said: "Crowdfunder is an all-or-nothing model. If a project doesn't reach its target, no money is taken from backers."

The Trust's statement yesterday said takeover was in "serious doubt", although it had previously stated that would take place irrespective of the success or failure of its crowd-funding project.

Ryan stepped down as Doncaster chairman in November ending a 15-year association with Rovers. He is understood to have met with Football League representatives this week in a bid to reassure them he and Tomlinson had the finances to run the club.

In interview with BBC Radio Sheffield yesterday he said was sorry the crowd-funding had failed but added: "The real problem is with the Football League. They have made it so difficult now that unless you have a bag full of cash you are going to get turned down."

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