Former Wigan owner Dave Whelan looks to help club following administration

Former Wigan Athletic chairman Dave Whelan
Former Wigan Athletic chairman Dave Whelan Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA

Former Wigan owner Dave Whelan says he will look at whether he is able to help the club after they were put in administration, but says he "can't promise anything".

Administrators Begbies Traynor say other interested parties have already been in touch, as they prepare to undertake a thorough review of the club's financial position.

The Championship side are facing a 12-point deduction for entering administration, although when that sanction is applied depends on whether the club can achieve survival on the pitch.

They are currently 14th, and if they stay out of the bottom three the deduction will be applied to their final tally this season. If they are relegated, they would be docked the points at the start of their 2020-21 League One campaign.

Whelan, who owned the club when they won the FA Cup in 2013, says he is keen to assist but said he had to bear in mind his age, and the extent of the club's financial problems, when deciding whether to get involved again.

"I can't promise anything. I'm 83 - I'll be 84 later this year. Age is age," he told Wigan Today.

"And I have no idea about the depths of the club's financial problems and how much they owe.

"You can't blindly make commitments to bail a business out come what may. We sit on the fence and wait to see what details - if any - emerge."

A general view of the Dave Whelan statue outside the DW Stadium, home to Wigan Athletic on the day the club were placed into administration. Credit: Martin Rickett/PA

Wigan are the first club to go into administration since the suspension of English football due to the coronavirus pandemic in March, with joint administrator Gerald Krasner saying the impact of the outbreak on the club had been "significant".

Another of the administrators, Dean Watson, said his firm was contacted by the club's legal team and that conversations had taken place with the board, the manager and the local council. He confirmed there had already been expressions of interest.

"It's very fluid, very fast-moving," he said.

"We've got interested parties already getting in touch with us. I'm stood on the pitch now and you've only got to look at it, see what an impressive stadium they've got, a good fanbase, and the team are on a really good run. So we're quite positive."

Watson and his colleague Paul Stanley both said it was too soon to ascertain the full financial position of the club.

Whelan and his family sold their stake in the club to the Hong Kong-based International Entertainment Corporation (IEC) in November 2018.

Premier League chief executive Masters told MPs on Tuesday that his competition had already made good on its 2019-20 commitments to the football pyramid, and that there had not yet been any "specific approach" for further help from the EFL.