Of the five bids received to buy Port Vale FC, businessman Keith Ryder is now in pole position and will have further talks with the club's administrators.
In a statement Mr Ryder said he believed there was the 'basis infrastructure' at Port Vale to support a Championship club.
After receiving a ten-point deduction for entering administration the Valiants are currently one place and four points above Northampton in the League Two table.
Former Cobblers loanee Saido Berahino meanwhile is back with his parent club West Bromwich Albion after a spell with Brentford was cut short.
The striker had performed well with the Bees, scoring four goals in eight games but was then dropped from the side for their next two outings.
Manager Uwe Rosler said: "Saido has returned to West Brom for private reasons.
"We respect that. He's not a Brentford player any more, so it's not our place to comment on the issue."