Time is running out for Portsmouth Football Club. A consultation is now underway with staff about more redundancies. It's administrators have also said the club could fold before the season starts in three weeks time.
The threat of liquidation has been hanging over Fratton Park for months, if not years. Recently the club's fans have been campaigning to become it's new owners and had enlisted the help of some players. But that hope is now hanging in the balance. The administrators have warned unless the club's wage bill is reduced further through the sale of more players, and with compromise agreements Pompey's purchase won't happen. Portpin - a firm run by the club's former owner Balram Chainrai - has also put an offer on the table. But it also says the wage cuts MUST take place for them to proceed.
The Blues' wage bill has been reduced to eight million pounds following the departures of Hayden Mullins and Aaron Mokoena (Mock a way na). However, their exits came nine days ago - with Mr Birch now at a stalemate with the remaining eight players.
The administrators of Portsmouth Football Club (2010) Ltd have this afternoon commenced consultation with staff at the club about possible redundancies.
Trevor Birch, a partner at PKF and joint administrator of Portsmouth Football Club, said: "Under the terms of the CVA that was agreed with creditors at the end of June, Portpin agreed to complete its purchase of the club on the condition that the wage bill was reduced through player sales and compromise agreements.
"We have made progress in this respect over the past few weeks but there is still more that needs to be done if the club is to meet the pre-conditions for Portpin's purchase. Time is running out and, unless I can see a greater probability of player sales and compromises being completed in the near-term, the purchase will not go ahead and the club will have to close.
"We have spoken to all of the club's staff and players and started a redundancy consultation period. I sincerely hope that we can complete the sale of the club - but I believe that staff need to be aware of the situation so that they have as much of an opportunity as possible to explore other options.
"This has been an incredibly difficult time for the staff, many of whom have loyally served the club for a number of years, and I recognise that it is extremely upsetting for them. Today's announcement is not in any way a reflection of them - in fact, I'm sure that we would not have got this far without their support".