Melville resigns but vows to help Dundee through financial straits

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The Independent Online

Calum Melville has confirmed his resignation from the Dundee board but it is understood Melville still intends to fulfil his pledge to hand over £200,000 to help the club through their administration period.

Melville is believed to have deposited £50,000 in a club bank account last week and has told administrator Bryan Jackson of PKF that he will release three more instalments before the end of the year.

A spokesman for PKF confirmed Melville's resignation yesterday, alongside those of fellow board members Bob Brannan and George Knight, who was brought in as a supporters' representative.

Melville had offered to quit a month ago, citing difficulties in his private business life, in the first public sign of serious issues facing the First Division club.

Confirmation came when former manager Gordon Chisholm, who was made redundant on Friday along with assistant Billy Dodds and nine players, hit out at the running of the club.

Chisholm claimed other directors were too scared to upset Melville in case he pulled his money out, and revealed he had little or no communication with the main directors over the summer as he tried to rebuild his squad on a reduced budget.

Former chairman Brannan announced his resignation at the weekend, vowing to release his 54 per cent shareholding, in the expectation Jackson will sell it on to raise money to keep the club alive. He said in a statement on the club's website: "Calum Melville initially invested heavily with a view to achieving rapid promotion back to the SPL.

"It is a matter of public record that he committed to funding the club through to the end of season 2010-11.

"However, anticipated revenues from operating activities have failed to materialise, the funding gap has grown and Calum's own personal circumstances have changed, all contributing to the current situation."

Meanwhile, a former director, Giovanni di Stefano, has written to Jackson expressing his interest in purchasing the club outright. The lawyer, who was on the board when the club went into administration in 2003, asked Jackson to provide him with a figure outlining the club's liabilities and an estimated amount needed to fund them through the season.

Jackson revealed on Friday that the club's total debt was around £2m, of which about £420,000 is owed to Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs. The administrator warned that there was only enough money to run the club until Christmas.

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