Well it all happened rather quickly in the end. After four or five days of intense speculation, both locally and nationally, I don't think many of us expected the club statement on Saturday afternoon. Now's not the time to be cynical, but I really hope Kenwright has found the 'investor' he has been searching for 24/7, to take the club forward.
When the dust finally settles on the biggest news for Evertonians for probably 30 years or more, we need to see concrete plans to restore the club amongst the frontrunners in the Premier League, and dispel the tag of 'plucky little Everton, punching above their weight'. The two main issues Farhad Moshiri must address are the ground issue and the strength of the playing squad; I'll leave Roberto Martinez until later...
However, those hoping to see the back of Robert Elstone as CEO, will be left 'ringing their hands' I feel; Bill will have ensured that any 'takeover' as such will involve his 'star pupil' who, despite what fans think locally, as Chairman of the club, he rates him very highly.
More interesting will be the new man's take on the ground situation. Having watched at close quarters, the building of the truly magnificent Emirates Stadium, now the best domestic ground in the UK, will he want a scaled-down version in Walton Hall Park? Or, as many fans want, a credible plan to redevelop Goodison Park? My guess is Kenwright and co will push for a new build somewhere in the City. This means of course, resuming a dialogue with Joe Anderson and the City Council, after the recent 'war of words' ended in a PR disaster for the club. There is a few olive branches to be offered there, I think.
Next on the agenda is the retention and improvement of the playing squad. I believe Stones will move on in the Summer, and possibly Lukaku will push for a move, but hopefully the others will see the promise of investment as a sign the club is moving in the right direction. I guess the BIG question is whether Moshiri with his business connections will be able to attract additional investment and purchase additional shares from the current board, and has he been given a promise by Kenwright and Woods (now that Earl is out the way), that this will happen?
Finally, what does the deal mean for the manager? No-one knows what the new guy is really like... I believe the manager will be given another 12 months, probably on the back of Kenwright's assurances, but having paid £200M, Moshiri will want to see real signs of progress, and the right man in place to move the club forward and realise his investment as well as ambition
The next 6-12 months will be really interesting for all Evertonians. Let's give the new guy a chance to put his blueprint into place, in the meanwhile, let's enjoy the ride.