BusinessBusiness RecoveryFootball in hot water after ITV digital loss

Football in hot water after ITV digital loss

In a further blow to lower division football clubs, the Nationwide Football League has lost its battle for compensation against Carlton and Granada, the parents of insolvent company ITV Digital.

Many of the League clubs who were hoping to recuperate money from the lawsuit to aid their failing finances could find themselves in dire straits. So far, more than ten clubs have filed for insolvency and, according to experts, six more clubs are in danger of following suit.

The Football League itself was confident it would win when it launched the battle against the television giants and had said the clubs would be able to get out of difficulties from the lawsuit.

Matt Dunham, the partner at RSM Robson Rhodes that helped Bury FC out of difficulties earlier this year, said losing the lawsuit could spell the end for some clubs and put the ones that have been relegated in difficulties.

He said: ‘It confirms the difficult trading conditions the clubs are in. They are under major pressure from wages and players have been released over the summer.’

Dunham added the League’s chances of appeal looked limited following the judge’s statement.

In his judgement Justice Gordon Langley said the statement the League had based its lawsuit on – saying ITV Digital’s partners would guarantee payment – was unclear and not legally binding.

He added: ‘Neither company is liable to the Football League for any sum due or damages payable for breach of the June contract made between the League and ITV Digital.’

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