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Thursday, 16 May, 2002, 14:06 GMT 15:06 UK
Bradford City in administration
Bradford's Valley Parade stadium
Bradford are 13m in the red
Bradford City have gone into administration just a year after being relegated from the Premier League.

The club were granted a limited order by the High Court in Leeds and will have its position reviewed in July.


The administrators have confirmed that they will be seeking to achieve a speedy sale of the club
Bradford chairman Geoffrey Richmond

Bradford are one of the 72 football clubs affected by the collapse of ITV Digital, which owes the three lower divisions 178.5m.

Bradford City's share of those television rights would have been approximately 5m.

Tax bill

And another two years of paying its leading player Benito Carbone's 40,000 a week contract would have added a further 5m to the club's debt.

At the court hearing the club also said it owed the Inland Revenue 400,000.

Mr Justice Blackburn warned Bradford City that if the administration was not a success, it would be the end of the club.

At its recent annual meeting the club admitted it was nearly 13m in the red.

"On the positive side the administrators have confirmed that they will be seeking to achieve a speedy sale of the club," chairman Geoffrey Richmond told the Bradford website.

It is understood the Football League will not prevent clubs who are in administration starting the new season, primarily to help those affected by the ITV Digital crisis.

Previously, clubs who are in the hands of administrators have been set deadlines by the League to come out of administration.

Benito Carbone
Bradford cannot afford Carbone's wages

Mike Moore, of administrators Kroll Buchler Phillips, painted a bleak picture for the club's future unless new owners could be found quickly.

That future could include players' contracts not being honoured.

"Although the administration can be funded, there is limited money available and unfortunately, it will therefore be necessary to terminate the contracts of many players."

But the Professional Footballers' Association chief executive Gordon Taylor warned that such a move would be "very dangerous".

"To go into administration and write off your debts totally destroys your credibility.

"If that happens we'd suggest no player goes to Bradford without having something written into his contract.

"If he (Richmond) wants to start writing his own rules he's going down a very dangerous road.

"If you want to have a competition that's credible there should be no place in the league for a club run according to the chairman's particular whims."

Despite disappointing results last season, Bradford still averaged gates of 15,000.

"It is anticipated that any purchaser will honour these short and long-term season tickets that have been purchased from the club," said Moore.

A supporters' meeting is being held on Thursday.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Bradford City chairman Geoffrey Richmond
"The ITV digital situation has been a burden"
BBC Sport's James Pearce
"Bradford are struggling for survival"

Latest news

Analysis

Football feels pinch
See also:

28 Mar 02 | Football
Links to more Bradford City stories are at the foot of the page.


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