Portsmouth administrators warn club could shut in two weeks

by Rachael Singh

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25 Jul 2012

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Trevor Birch

PKF ADMINISTRATORS to Portsmouth FC have warned the club is under threat of closure in two weeks if player contracts fail to be agreed.

The club entered administration for the second time in two years on 17 February, with PKF partners Trevor Birch, Ian Gould and Bryan Jackson appointed.

In June, the administrators managed to secure a rescue deal known as a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA), in which unsecured creditors such as the taxman and local businesses are likely to receive 2p for every pound owed.

A statement from the administrators said that unless the remaining senior first-team players agree to transfers or to sign wage compromise deals, the club will close on 10 August.

Birch said: "The facts are straightforward: under the terms of the offer for the club, in order to complete the CVA proposal, the players have to leave and conclude compromise settlements.

"This condition has been imposed by the Pompey Supporters Trust as well as by Portpin – both interested parties have made it clear that they won't take on the club unless there is movement from the players.

"We will continue to do all we can to facilitate these deals, but the club's future hinges on the willingness of certain players and their agents to sign up to compromise agreements that are affordable both in terms of the amount and timing of repayments."

The administrators said that they were making progress with some players but others and their agents "still don't understand what's at stake here".

If the club is liquidated, players will no longer be protected by the Football Creditor Rule, which ensures they are paid first and in full. All the players will be treated as unsecured creditors and are likely to receive less than 1p for every pound owed. 

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