Birch reveals Pompey needs new owners by June

DEADLINE Pompey administrator Trevor Birch
DEADLINE Pompey administrator Trevor Birch

POMPEY administrator Trevor Birch has revealed he needs to find a buyer by June 2.

It comes as he took part in a web chat held by The News answering fans questions.

User Phil OMac said: ‘On what date does the company cease to exist if no new funding is forthcoming?’

Mr Birch replied: ‘You cannot put a date on it. But we need to find a solution in my opinion before June 2, which is the date of the AGM of the Football League.’

Mr Birch confirmed he is working ‘two potential interested parties’ – plus the Pompey Supporters’ Trust’ – but said talks were not at an advanced stage.

According to Mr Birch, the two parties had approached him over ‘the last two or three weeks’ and do not have history of owning football clubs either in the UK or abroad.

He outlined the club cannot continue next season without a new owner and admitted Pompey could be deducted points if it comes out of administration via anything other than a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA).

The biggest creditors who will be able to influence whether a CVA can be agreed are Portpin – the firm owned by former Pompey owner Balram Chainrai, Pompey’s former parent company Convers Sports Initiatives (CSI), HMRC and player claims, according to Mr Birch.

He revealed Pompey is entitled to around £14m in Premier League parachute payments, which includes £2m assigned to former owner Sacha Gaydamak.

He stressed the importance of football running in a normal business-like manner to ensure its ‘long-term sustainability’, and added there is ‘no immediate intention or likelihood’ of Portsmouth City Council buying Fratton Park.