1. ITV Report

Ipswich Town say losses will be addressed

Ipswich Town Football Club Photo: Sean Dempsey/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Ipswich Town insist the club's losses will be tackled as they prepare for the new Financial Fair Play rules which come into force next season.

Town announced a loss of nearly £16 million for the year ending June 2012, with debts rising to almost £80 million. However the club says the majority of that figure is carried by reclusive owner Marcus Evans's businesses, the Marcus Evans Group.

Its nearly five years since Evans completed his takeover of the Suffolk club and aqcuired their debt of £31 million. But his quest for Premier League football goes on, with Town almost set for another season in the Championship. Mick McCarthy is currently the fourth manager to serve under Evans following the dismissals of Jim Magilton, Roy Keane and Paul Jewell.

Earlier this year Simon Clegg stepped down as Ipswich Town's Chief Executive, with joint managing directors Ian Milne and Jonathan Symonds now involved in the day-to-day running of the club.

In a statement, Ipswich Town's Finance Director Mark Andrews said ''We brought in some experienced players in the 2011/12 season, Paul Jewell's first full season in charge, which kept the playing squad costs high but unfortunately did not have the desired effect of the promotion push we hoped for.

''Most Championship clubs are carrying debt but the majority of debt carried at Ipswich Town is not external, it is owed to the Marcus Evans Group. Nothing has changed in that respect.

''Marcus Evans has invested heavily in the playing squad with all the managers he has worked with and will continue to do so but with FFP regulations officially coming into force next season, 2013/14, we are readying the Club's finances to fall in line and are making progress in achieving this aim and reducing losses accordingly.''

Carl Day, Chairman of the Ipswich Town Independent Supporters Trust admits he's concerned about the level of debt connected with the club, plus the sale of the training ground to Marcus Evans (Guernsey) Limited.

''That's no longer an asset, and the club now has to pay rent on it,'' says Day.

''We campaigned strongly for Category One Academy status at Ipswich. With the Financial Fair Play rules coming into force we're going to be more reliant on filling a squad with young players with hopefully a few stars in amongs them.

''We're still only Category Two, and that allows academies with higher categories to poach our better players.

''Its a serious issue. Last year's accounts were slightly made better because of the sale of John Walters and Connor Wickham. But when is the next Connor Wickham coming through? If we don't have that, then this level of loss is going to be a regular occurance, and I can't see it being sustainable.

''The Premier League seems to be the only way forward. The fans can only do so much. According to the figures we had a Chief Executive who was reportedly on £200,000 a year. Did we get £200,000 worth of value out of that? I would question it.''

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