Fenlon hopes derby clash can survive

PA Sport
Pat Fenlon hopes that Hearts can overcome their financial difficulties
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Pat Fenlon hopes that Hearts can overcome their financial difficulties

Hibernian manager Pat Fenlon would be disappointed if the Edinburgh derby disappeared as a result of Hearts' financial struggles.

Hearts have pleaded for "emergency backing" after being hit with a winding-up order over a tax bill of almost £450,000, suggesting the November 17 fixture with St Mirren could be the club's last.

The Clydesdale Bank Premier League club warned supporters of their grave predicament after confirming action by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs at the Court of Session in Edinburgh.

Fenlon was reluctant to comment on the situation at Tynecastle, but hopes a repeat of the situation at Rangers can be avoided.

Fenlon told Press Association Sport: "Derbies are the lifeblood of Edinburgh, Glasgow, everywhere else. There's one missing in Glasgow; it will be disappointing if there was one missing here. But it's nothing I can change or do anything about."

Hearts have said they are attempting to negotiate a payment plan with the tax authorities over the matter, which is unrelated to a £1.75million HMRC bill the club are challenging at a tax tribunal.

They also asked supporters to find the money to see the club through the crisis in an appeal described as "not so much a request as a necessity".

Fenlon added: "I haven't read too much into it. It's not really my concern.

"It happens in football. We've just got to make sure that we're prepared here and how we do things here. We manage that right and we try to prepare this team every week to play football matches.

"That's my job. It's not my job to worry about what goes on at another football club."

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