Derby County are “sleeping towards oblivion” as their potential buyers “fear” that they are in “danger of liquidation” in the coming months.
The Rams are in turmoil at the moment as they have been deducted 21 points as a result of their financial troubles.
Despite this, Wayne Rooney‘s side have fared relatively well on the pitch. They have lost just six of their 20 Championship games this season.
Their points deduction looks set to send them down to League One as they are currently 19 points adrift of safety.
This comes as the Rams currently have debts of £60m. Included in this is around £29m that is owed to HMRC.
Derby’s administrators (Quantuma) are optimistic that the club have a positive future. But potential buyers fear that the Championship side are “sleepwalking towards oblivion” as liquidation is a clear possibility.
Kirchner is currently the main contender to buy Derby as other prospective buyers have pulled out of the race to save the club.
A source has told the Daily Mail that: “The administrators say they are confident of striking a deal with HMRC, but while we do not know what that deal is, how can you decide to buy the club? You simply can’t.
“The administrators are making positive noises, but it is in their interests to do so – firstly to maintain hope of a sale, but also because they are being paid as long as the club remains in their hands. Their costs (around £2.8m so far) are adding to the burden on the club all the time.
“The reality among those who have looked to buy Derby is that liquidation is more likely than not.
“As it stands, the inescapable debt is nearly £30m to HMRC, more than £20m to MSD Holdings (US investment group) and another £10m of football debt. No buyer is going to take that on.
“The only body who can convene to save Derby is the government. It needs them to get the treasury, the EFL, Mel Morris (Derby owner) and MSD around a table and put together a plan to rescue the club.”
Another source added that right now Derby do not represent “value” to potential buyers:
“It is in MSD’s interests to keep Derby alive for now, in the hope of getting their money back. But they made a bad loan. There will come a time when they might think they are throwing good money after bad and walk away.
“The administrators have to satisfy the courts that there is a realistic chance of coming out of administration. Unless they cut a deal with HMRC – who are the preferential creditor by law. They are simply kicking the can down the road.
“The EFL will be happy enough for this to be the case until the end of the season. They want to avoid a club going under during a campaign. This opens up all manner of problems with regards fixtures that are yet to be played and potential legal cases.
“The bottom line is, for Derby to survive, all those who are owed money will have to agree to take less. You also need the stadium included in any deal, and that means reaching an agreement with Mel and MSD.
“There is still interest out there and people can always be talked into buying a football club. It is unique in that regard – but right now Derby just does not represent any value or business logic.”
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