Pompey face crucial debt meeting

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The Independent Online

Portsmouth's administrator is confident of securing a deal from the club's creditors today that should prevent any further points deduction next season.

The administrator Andrew Andronikou needs 75 per cent of the creditors to agree to accept a Company Voluntary Agreement (CVA) where they will receive only 20p in the pound for the money they are owed.

An agreement will allow Portsmouth to come out of administration and avoid any further sanctions from the Football League next season.

Andronikou believes he will reach the 75 per cent mark at today's creditors meeting despite Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs already having rejected the offer. He said: "A lot of proxy votes have already come in and although I don't want to pre-empt anything it does look as though we are going to make it.

"I believe that HMRC will not be able to block the deal because we can still reach the 75 per cent mark without them."

Today's meeting may not be the end of the saga for the club who were relegated from the Premier League last season after being handed a nine-point deduction for going into administration.

HMRC claims it is due £35million of the £105m owed to unsecured creditors and that would put them above the 75 per cent mark. Andronikou disputes this, saying the figure is around £21m – the disputed sum of £14m relates to image rights and the administrator claims that can be challenged.

As a result it is possible that there could be another creditors meeting where a modified proposal is put forward.

A HMRC statement said: "HMRC is determined to achieve a fair deal for the taxpayer."

Pompey fans are keeping their fingers crossed that the CVA will be agreed.

Nigel Tresidder, chairman of the Pompey Supporters' Club central branch, said: "It sounds like excellent news and we hope that will be confirmed at the meeting.

"If we can get the CVA through that will establish the club again and allow us to appoint a new manager and start planning for next season.

"Until we get that agreement everything is still up in the air."

A CVA would also push forward a takeover of the club – current chairman Balram Chainrai, who put the club in to administration to reclaim cash owed to him, could remain in control despite having originally stated he had no wish to do so.

Andronikou, meanwhile, has held talks with several interested parties including groups from South Africa and Ukraine.

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