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Plymouth Argyle administrators issue deadlines for bids

Plymouth Argyle's Home Park stadium
Buyers have until Monday to submit their bids for the League One strugglers

Potential buyers for Plymouth Argyle have until noon on Monday to submit bids for the debt-stricken League One club, administrators have announced.

The Pilgrims went into administration on 4 March and have been deducted 10 points by the Football League, while 16 club staff have been made redundant.

Administrators have indicated they intend to choose a buyer by 17 March.

A club statement said any successful bidder would be "immediately required to pay a non-returnable deposit."

The statement continued: "In return, they will be granted exclusivity.

"During this period of exclusivity, the bidder will be able to undertake due diligence and, importantly, will be required to provide funding until the end of the season.

"To participate in the bidding process, interested parties must have proved funds and signed a non-disclosure agreement."

It is believed Argyle require an injection of £3m to stay afloat until the end of the season.

Lead administrator Brendan Guilfoyle, who successfully took Crystal Palace out of administration last year, has claimed a "number of interested parties have declared an interest in acquiring the club".

The support of the fans was magnificient... it could well contribute to the sale of the club

Administrator Brendan Guilfoyle

Argyle, who were relegated from the Championship last season, lifted themselves off the foot of the League One table on Tuesday, with a 1-0 win at home to now-bottom side Swindon in front of a crowd of 8,830.

Plymouth manager Peter Reid dedicated the victory to the employees who had lost their jobs.

Meanwhile, Guilfoyle on Wednesday paid tribute to the home supporters, who helped double the takings of the previous home game - a 2-1 win over Colchester in front of 8,982 - after he asked season ticket holders to pay a voluntary additional £10 admission fee to games.

"The support of the fans was magnificent," said Guilfoyle. "It might well be something that contributes to the successful sale of the football club."

Former Manchester City and Sunderland boss Reid has donated his 1986 FA Cup losing finalist's medal, from his time as a player at Everton, to a fundraising auction which is due to take place on 24 March at Home Park.

The club have appealed for others to donate further items, and a further statement added: "We need the items, today. Not next week. Not even tomorrow. We cannot underline how critical time is.

"The money raised will be used to run the club while the administrators conduct business with potential buyers.

"There is a very real danger the club could go under - that's not scaremongering."

On the same day as the club went into administration, creditor Her Majesty's Revenue & Customs (HMRC) had applied to present the 124-year-old Devon club with a winding-up petition in an apparent attempt to ensure they would be paid the full £300,000 amount owed to them.

The High Court turned down that application, while a HMRC statement on the matter read: "HMRC does not initiate winding-up proceedings of football clubs lightly.

"However we will not hesitate to do so when that is the right way to protect the country's tax revenues and other creditors from those who trade whilst insolvent and run up debts that they simply cannot pay."

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see also
Reid pays tribute to former staff
09 Mar 11 |  Plymouth
Charity loan to Plymouth probed
09 Mar 11 |  Plymouth
Plymouth 1-0 Swindon
08 Mar 11 |  League One
Argyle lays off 16 and shuts shop
08 Mar 11 |  Devon
Sheff Wed 2-4 Plymouth
05 Mar 11 |  League One
Plymouth go into administration
04 Mar 11 |  Plymouth
Argyle squad get second PFA loan
01 Mar 11 |  Plymouth
Plymouth receive 10-point penalty
21 Feb 11 |  Plymouth
Plymouth survive winding-up bid
09 Feb 11 |  Plymouth

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