Football

Former Leeds chairman makes 'financial meltdown' warning

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Crystal Palace's escape from extinction on Tuesday was welcomed by fans, players and even Westminster - but insolvency experts claim they will not be the only club on the brink of going bust.

Gerald Krasner, the former chairman of Leeds and administrator of Bournemouth who is now a partner at insolvency and restructuring specialists Begbies Traynor, has warned that eight clubs in the Premier League and Championship could also be close to financial meltdown.

"The news that Crystal Palace has been saved is a welcome relief for all those connected with the club but should serve as a wake-up call to a number of football clubs up and down the country," said Krasner.

"Our data shows that there are eight Premier League and Championship clubs with 'critical' financial problems, issues that may well get worse given that clubs will see the usual reduction in income over the summer months now that the domestic football season has finished."

He added: "It is imperative these clubs take steps as soon as possible to address these issues, otherwise Crystal Palace won't be the last club we see teetering on the brink of liquidation."

However, Palace fans were celebrating on Tuesday night after the CPFC 2010 consortium finally agreed a deal in principle with Bank of Scotland over the purchase of Selhurst Park.

Hundreds of fans, who had gathered outside Lloyds Bank's headquarters and at the stadium, feared the worst when the 3pm deadline set by the club's administrators passed.

But an hour and a half later, with administrator Brendan Guilfoyle poised to begin liquidation proceedings starting with selling off the club's players, they got the news they wanted.

Under Football League rules the takeover will not be official until the club exits administration via a CVA, a process which could take some weeks.

Nonetheless, barring one or two logistical issues which need ironing out, the future of the 105-year-old club should be secure.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Topics:
Football
Championship
Premier League
Crystal Palace

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