Fresh twist in Pompey saga

PA Sport
Portsmouth are 20th in npower League One
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Portsmouth are 20th in npower League One

The future of Portsmouth is clouded in uncertainty as a potential dispute developed over who should manage their affairs while they are in administration.

The cash-strapped npower League One side are currently in the hands of PKF, headed up by Trevor Birch, and a High Court hearing was set for Thursday morning where they were going to try to secure the sale of the club's Fratton Park ground to the Portsmouth Supporters Trust (PST) from former owners Portpin.

But PST said the hearing had been adjourned, before another party, P&A Partnership, claim that Portpin wanted them and not PKF to manage the the club's finances until a buyer could be found. P&A's Brendan Guilfoyle said in a statement: "If I am appointed, I am confident that we can find a buyer to secure the long-term future of this historic and important club."

Guilfoyle, a well-known football administrator, said Portpin were unhappy with some elements of how PKF had been dealing with things, but they were happy to fund the club through to the end of the season provided he was allowed to run their day-to-day affairs.

He also added that Portpin may be forced to shut the 114-year-old club down if they do not secure a change of administrator.

P&A initially released a statement which read: "Tomorrow, Thursday 13 December, the High Court will be asked to make a critical decision affecting the future of Portsmouth Football Club.

"The administrators of the club believe that if the court does not agree to their application, they may have to close the club. However, Portpin have made funds available to enable the club to continue trading provided that Brendan Guilfoyle is appointed administrator to find a new buyer for the club."

Portpin is led by former Portsmouth owner Balram Chainrai. Guilfoyle has become a well-known hand when it comes to administrations, having this summer helped the Bradford Bulls rugby league side with their problems, while he previously worked in football with Crystal Palace and Plymouth.

"The court papers show the club has become a lot more saleable in the last six months," Guilfoyle said of Portsmouth.

Guilfoyle then told Sky Sports he believed PKF had asked for the adjournment, and that Portpin wanted him to make sure that if the PST bid - described this week the Football League as carrying "significant merit" - failed, that other options could be sourced.

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