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Portsmouth go into administration

Fri 26th Feb 2010 | Football Club Administration

Portsmouth have become the first Premier League club to enter administration.

The club will also be docked nine points as a result which means relegation is almost certain.

They were due to face a winding-up order on 1 March but decided to go into administration unless a buyer for the club was found.

It was reported that four parties were considering a takeover but Thursday's deadline passed without a conclusion.

A news conference will be held at 1500 GMT.

Administrator Andrew Andronikou, of insolvency experts UHY Hacker Young, now has the responsibility of beginning the process of cutting costs at the club to try to keep it as a viable entity.

Milan Mandaric, chairman of Portsmouth from 1998 to 2006 and now Leicester chief, told BBC's Midlands Late Kick Off: "It's really sad. It's not right, it's not fair to those people there and I just hope for the sake of the club, and the sporting community, and football in that city, they sort things out.

"And I think they will eventually will. That club will never die. That club has lion's heart. They (Portsmouth fans) love their club, they will always be there. Unfortunately they don't deserve these kinds of difficulties."

It follows weeks of speculation over the survival of the cash-strapped south coast side and is a stark warning for all football clubs.

Portsmouth employ nearly 600 people - directly or indirectly - and accountant Nick O'Reilly of Vantis, who recently examined the club's books, said the club was "completely dysfunctional" and warned them to expect a "rocky" time ahead.

"The next few months are crucial to the business," he said. "People will lose jobs, but hopefully the club will come out the other side."

As well as struggling at the bottom of the Premier League, currently seven points behind second-placed Burnley, Portsmouth have suffered a catalogue of ongoing financial woe.

Players have been paid late on four occasions this season, while the club is also involved in a separate dispute with former owner Sacha Gaydamak over whether they have missed a deadline in paying a £9m chunk of the £28m they owe him.

The Premier League also withheld £2m of transfer payments and diverted a £7m slice of TV revenue to Chelsea and Watford to cover the signings of Glen Johnson and Tommy Smith.

They are also being sued by former defender Sol Campbell for £1.7m for unpaid image rights.

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