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Steve Archibald
"There is 340,000 that they are sitting on and 240,000 is my money"
 real 14k

Steve Archibald
"They came like thieves in the night"
 real 14k

Friday, 16 February, 2001, 14:28 GMT
Archibald blames Ayr's Barr
Steve Archibald could have left New Broomfield for good
Steve Archibald could have left New Broomfield for good
Steve Archibald has pointed the finger of blame at Ayr United's Bill Barr for bringing Airdrieonians to the verge of extinction.

Former Scotland striker Archibald says he was effectively sacked by the provisional liquidators when they terminated his management contract.

And he explained to BBC Scotland on Thursday that, as a result, his offer to buy the club has also been scrapped.

Archibald denies that the 30,000 the provisional liquidators say has been unpaid - or his ability to find the cash to finally buy the club - is the reason for the present crisis.

Ground share

Asked why he had not been able to conclude a deal that has been on the cards since July, Archibald said: "There is a simple explanation for that and that is because of our negotiation with Barr Construction, who are a major creditor of the club and Bill Barr is chairman of Ayr United Football Club.

"We have tried desperately to arrive at a conclusion to negotiations with Bill Barr over many, many months," he said.

"He wanted to ground share with Ayr United at Airdrie Football Club should Ayr win promotion to the Premier League and we fought against that.

"Then last week or 10 days ago, that came off the agenda, but some other things came on the agenda which were non-descript points that yet again delayed us."

Doors closed overnight

Archibald says that he wrote to Barr telling him that he was ending negotiations as he did not see an end in sight.

I have never considered walking away, but I have been pushed away by the liquidators
  Steve Archibald
"At that stage, we were going to tell the liquidators what had happened, but overnight the doors were closed to us and we were locked out of the stadium," he said.

Archibald claims that Barr Construction, who built Airdrie's new stadium, were the only creditors still holding out against his proposed deal.

He also denied suggestions by provisional liquidators KPMG that it was 22,500 in unpaid management fees - a further 7,500 is due on Friday - that led to Wednesday's lockout.

"It is a question of a clause in the contract that we had between us that states that any money I pay to KPMG is a part pre-payment of the acquisition of shares in Airdrie Football Club when the time comes," said Archibald.

Playing good football

He says that he has disputed how that money has been used.

"We have just sold Austin McCann to Hearts for 100,000. In total, there is 340,000 that they are sitting on and 240,000 is my money."

Blair Nimmo of KPMG
Blair Nimmo of KPMG
Archibald says he has no recourse to the courts that would not require a lengthy process.

"By terminating my contract, they have terminated any offer I have made to the creditors," he said.

"We have worked desperately hard to make everything on the pitch, and off the pitch, work and it was working to a large extent.

"We were playing good football, the best that has been seen at Airdrie for a long, long time.

"We have Manchester United coming up in two or three week's time and we have a potential quarter-final of the Scottish Cup in the very near future."

Just been sacked

"My contract has been terminated by the liquidator and I now have no further involvement with Airdrie Football Club.

"It is absolutely not the same as Steve Archibald walking away from Airdrie.

"I have never walked away and have never considered walking away, but in fact I have been pushed away by the liquidators.

"I have just been sacked, so to speak, in their words in my attempts to keep the club going."

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