Torquay United Football Club enters administration

Torquay United
Torquay United are set to enter administration. Credit: PA Images.

Torquay United will enter administration after the team's owner confirmed that he was no longer able to fund the club.

The team, currently playing in the National League South, have been owned by Clarke Osborne since 2016 after he bought them from a consortium.

Now though, he says that he isn't able to continue supporting the team financially and that he had appointed administrators to run the club.

It comes the same day as manager Gary Johnson has announced he's also left the club with immediate effect.

In a statement Johnson said the decision was by "mutual agreement" as he thanked staff and fans for their support.

In a statement released on the club's website Mr Osborne called for all supporters to come together and continue backing the team despite the announcement.

“It is with sincere regret that I advise that circumstances beyond my control during the last five weeks have brought me to the position that I am unable to continue financial support for the Club and I have today filed on behalf of the Directors, an intention to appoint an administrator to the Club and Company," it said.

"The prospect of creating a new stadium and commercial facility was the driver for the investment, the excitement to deliver something truly transformative for the Club and Torbay.

"I would reiterate what I have said many times, that Torquay United is blessed with fantastic, passionate support and I am sorry that we have not been able to reach our goal for the Club and fans, despite significant effort and investment.

The club needs a financial restructure according to owner Clarke Osborne.

"Now is the time for the Club, supporters, Torbay community and the Local Authority to come together and continue on the path to the future. I will assist a change of ownership where and when invited.

"The detailed plans, proposals and related data for the proposed developments will be gifted to the Club as will any time requested to assist in the future planning and development.”

In the statement Mr Osborne paid tribute to the 'hard-working' Torquay United family.

He went on to say that he felt the football club needed an overhaul of its financing structure to become more financially sustainable in the future.

On the pitch the move could see Torquay United deducted 10 points, dropping 11th to 18th in the table, meaning they will be just four points off the relegation places in the division.

Today's announcement comes just a few months after the team's supporters took part in a sit-in protest after a match on 2 December.

There was then a subsequent meeting with the board and the Torquay United Supporters Trust.

Relations between fans and the board have deteriorated further though and another protest was planned for this weekend.

With the latest news the club is now looking for its fourth owner in just a decade.

His tenure has been a turbulent one for the team, twice have they been relegated to the sixth tier of English football during his reign.

Torquay United had reached the National League Play Off Final in 2021, they missed out on a return to the football league after losing to Hartlepool on penalties.