Portsmouth sweat on their secret millionaires

Click to follow
The Independent Online

The Premier League is set to confirm a nine-point deduction for Portsmouth today after the club's administrator admitted that talks with a takeover consortium have yet to lead to any proof of funds being produced.

League officials will meet the club's administrator Andrew Andronikou ahead of a board meeting today, when the points deduction is expected to be rubber-stamped. He will also update the League on a proposed bid by a group of unknown investors being fronted by Rob Lloyd, a property developer best known for an appearance on Channel 4's The Secret Millionaire.

Andronikou met Lloyd following Portsmouth's defeat at Liverpool on Monday and told the Cheshire-based businessman he needs to see proof of funds. Andronikou said yesterday: "I take all interest seriously, but he has to prove to us he has the credentials and the wherewithal to take it forward."

The fact that the investors' identities are being kept under wraps – Lloyd is not putting any money in himself – and that the takeover would be underwritten by a New York-based hedge fund has set alarm bells ringing, including with Pompey's current owner, Balram Chainrai.

Andronikou warned: "I have to make an assessment of the situation and until I have proof of funds I will not make any... judgements about which investment vehicles are appropriate."

He added he was "pretty confident" of taking the club out of administration within six to eight weeks. Portsmouth will get access to £5m from the Premier League between now and the season's end, and £16m in the close season as "parachute payment" for their seemingly inevitable relegation.

The Premier League had been waiting for confirmation in the High Court that Portsmouth's administration was valid, and that happened yesterday after HM Revenue and Customs dropped its challenge.

Comments