Owls saga enters extra time

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Sheffield Wednesday will plead for more time when they face a winding-up order in the High Court on Wednesday after failing to secure a takeover deal in time.

The npower League One club, around £26million in debt, have been racing against the clock in a last-ditch bid to secure major new investment.

But despite the intervention of Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, who has been in talks with Wednesday's main creditors, the Co-Operative Bank, the club have yet to successfully conclude talks in their bid to stave off administration.

Mr Clegg, MP for Sheffield Hallam, is hoping the High Court will allow Wednesday and their bank another fortnight to reach agreement with one of four separate parties keen to take control at Hillsborough.

A club source told Press Association Sport: "Nick Clegg has been in meetings with senior management at the Co-operative Bank affirming the significant role Sheffield Wednesday Football Club plays within the local community.

"All parties will continue to do all they can to reach a successful conclusion to enable the club, a founder member of the Football League, to move forward."

The Owls have been summoned to the High Court over an unpaid PAYE tax bill of £600,000 and face a separate winding-up order issued by HM Revenue & Customs over VAT arrears of £300,000.

Wednesday were served with their first winding-up order in July over initial PAYE tax debts, which rose to £1.1million by the time the Co-operative Bank agreed to pay them.

But the bank are not prepared to bail out the club again and have been attempting to sell the club before the hearing, scheduled to start at around 11am. Alternatively they could place the club in administration.

Leicester chairman Milan Mandaric, who sold his stake in the Foxes to a Thai-based consortium in August, has confirmed his offer to rescue the Owls has been rejected.

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