English Premiership

Portsmouth debt £119 million

2010-04-21 16:22
Portsmouth (logo)
London - FA Cup finalists Portsmouth confirmed their debts have reached £119m as the administrator released a 70-page report on Wednesday detailing the relegated Premier League club’s woes.

Andrew Andronikou is attempting to secure a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) that would see Portsmouth’s debts repaid at a reduced percentage rate over several years.

The club published his letter to creditors, which included the background to Portsmouth’s current plight and all the figures, on their website.

A creditors meeting to discuss the proposals will be held on May 6.

When the south-coast club went into administration in February, Andronikou said he thought the total debt was about £78m but further investigation has revealed some stunning figures, including £9.7m owed to agents including £2.3m to one agent for the transfer of Lassana Diarra.

Unsecured creditors are owed about £90m, including £38.2m owed to the companies of former shareholders in unsecured loans.

The Government’s Revenue and Customs department is owed £17.1m while more than 400 trade creditors are owed a total of £4.37m.

“Football creditors”, protected by the FA and Premier League, are owed £17.3m in transfer fees.

Previous owner Balram Chainrai, expected to be dealt with separately from the CVA, is owed £14.5m having been paid £4m towards the loan of £18.5m he put into the club.

Andronikou must convince 75% of the unsecured creditors to agree to the CVA if the club is to be allowed out of administration by the first week of June.

That would give them a chance of persuading Uefa to accept a late application to play in next season’s Europa League after their surprise passage into the FA Cup final against Chelsea at Wembley next month.

Earlier on Wednesday, Premier League chief executive, Richard Scudamore said Portsmouth’s problems were a result of bad management.

“You cannot link the distribution of (Premier League) income to Portsmouth’s woes,” Scudamore told the BBC.

“I’m on record as saying in January that if a club, whilst in the Premier League, went into administration it would be down to bad management at the club. And it is.

“You can’t say it’s the way we distribute our money that’s caused Portsmouth’s problems.

“If you start the season knowing you’re going to get between 30 and 50 million as a starter from the Premier League, through the year, it is entirely possible to get yourself organised so you don’t get into the difficulties that Portsmouth got into.”

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