SOUTHEND United chairman Ron Martin does not know if the sale of the club will be completed by the time the Shrimpers are next in court.

Blues have been given until October 4 to pay off their outstanding tax bill of £250,000 and were warned the club would be wound up if the situation was not sorted by that date.

However, Martin has told TalkSPORT he remains uncertain of when the club will be in new hands.

“It was me that set the deadline for 42 days, six weeks, to allow the sale to go through,” said Martin.

“I don't know whether it'll be sorted out by then, but we'll continue to do all we can to make sure it is.”

Martin, who has been at the Roots Hall helm for 25 years, first put the Shrimpers up for sale in March.

And he has rubbished suggestions that he does not want to move on from Roots Hall.

“I'd like to have sold it when I put it on the market in March,” said Martin.

“I really wanted the sale to go through before the season started so the new buyer could put his mark on players and budgets and things like that, but I'm still here.

“For some ridiculous reason some fans think I don't want to sell, which is utter nonsense.

“My life changed probably in the Covid period and I made that decision many, many months ago but didn't announce it until March.”

The Echo revealed yesterday how Australian Justin Rees is heading up a consortium trying to buy the club.

And Martin confirmed Rees is currently more advanced in his talks than any other interested party.

“I'm not sure his name is not known, I thought it might be by now, but yes he's Australian,” confirmed Martin.

“He's also putting together a small consortium of three or four people, all of whom are known to either myself or Tom Lawrence the CEO.

“We do have a second buyer.

“Similar terms but certainly the person from Australia is more advanced than anybody else.”