Cash-strapped Imps watching Scott Loach situation with interest

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The way the weather looks at the moment your correspondent is considering how to conjure up more ways of describing the same old arctic conditions and, even with a milder period forecast it is beginning to look as if this coming Saturday’s fixture against Oxford United could be a doubt. 

Tuesday's FA Cup replay was a victim of the freeze and, even with several days to go the snow is so lingering and frost so established that another early pitch inspection could be on the cards, giving rise to consideration of Lincoln City’s financial situation , particularly if more home games are lost. 

City’s finances could hardly be described as parlous but, like most clubs in the lower reaches of the league do lead a rather hand to mouth existence and, as previously touched upon on givemefootball have now announced a hefty loss again after a period of relative financial calm brought about by previous manager, the now sadly departed Keith Alexander. 

Keith engineered regular visits to the play-offs and a gradual increase of the average gates to over 5,000. In League Two home gate revenue is all and, whilst the cup game would not have meant all of the gate receipts going to Lincoln, the loss of the forthcoming league home game would be a big blow. 

One possible way of clearing City’s debts might be the much touted sale of former Centre of Excellence product, Scott Loach, now with Watford. Loach left Lincoln for just £35,000 in 2006 but a 15 per cent sell-on clause could eliminate City’s overdraft and even produce a surplus for manager Steve Tilson’s war chest. 

With share sales at a 12-year low, gate receipts down and club shop not chipping in as much as previously, chairman Bob Dorrian will be keeping an eye on the situation with Spurs, Manchester United and Liverpool all reportedly interested in the player who has recently figured in Fabio Capello’s plans. With a certain inevitability, Manchester City are now said to be entering the fray. 

Dorrian told the Lincolnshire Echo: "The fans and myself will be monitoring what is going on with Scott because we have a vested interest in him as we have a sell-on clause. 

"But we will only receive a percentage of the actual fee and not an overall package. So if he moves in a deal worth £5m, but the up-front fee is £3m, we will only receive 15 per cent of that. 

"But even that would earn us a serious amount of money which, given the last financial year, would certainly wipe out the losses we incurred. 

"It just makes you realise how important the Centre of Excellence is in producing these young players who end up being courted by big clubs.  Obviously there is lot of speculation in the media about him, but it won't be until January whether anything materialises or whether it was just gossip. Hopefully, it won't be and he will move on for a big fee." 

Disclaimer: The views in this article are that of the writer and may not replicate those of the Professional Footballers' Association.

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