SWINDON Town’s board yesterday met with the consortium leading the way to become the club’s new owners but no deal was completed, the Advertiser understands.

A local group of potential investors are believed to be close to finalising an agreement which would see them take on a large chunk of majority shareholder Andrew Black’s 98 per cent stake in the Robins, and it is understood that a deal needs to be agreed before the end of the month else members of the Town squad may have to be sold.

Mr Black said the Swindon board would be making no comment when contacted by the Adver last night, although he did suggest that discussions remain positive with the respective parties.

Specialists are believed to already be in place should they be required to restructure the Robins’ finances.

Reports last night suggested Banbury United owner Jed McCrory could be a part of one of the consortiums interested in taking control at the County Ground.

Manager Paolo Di Canio was unclear of the situation at boardroom level when he spoke to the media after his side drew 0-0 at Leyton Orient last night.

He said: “I was always positive, I am negative now because of the game, but time flies quick and I want to make sure in which direction we have to run and start working on the way we can run to make the best for this club.

“I hope for the positive one, but any direction can be there.

“If something goes not the way we wanted we don’t know what is going on for this club.”

Meanwhile, Paul Benson yesterday joined Cheltenham on loan until the end of the season. The striker changed his mind about a switch to Whaddon Road over the weekend, as reported by the Advertiser on Monday, and could make his debut for the League Two side on Saturday.

Meanwhile, no progress has been made in the club’s efforts to loan out Luke Rooney or Lee Cox.