I’m not interested in scaremongering, but there are serious problems at Leeds that need to be addressed quickly.
Over the last few months Leeds fans have gone from daring to dream about oil rich billionaires to having nightmares about cash strapped banks. Throughout this time, one concern has been bubbling under the surface which is being slowly considered by more and more of the fan base. Administration.
Administration would be a disaster for Leeds at any point of the season, but the clubs finances and actions suggest that the last few months of the current campaign are going to be a massive struggle.
Many people simply look at the fact that we are debt free and assume that administration is impossibility, but just how debt free are we?
After all, we effectively took a loan out on the future sales of season tickets. We were told by Bates 12 months before being placed into administration that he had shrunk our debt to under £10 million, only for it to be revealed that the debt was actually in excess of £35 million. Finally, consider how Ken left Chelsea with around £20 million of hidden debt, and even the most neutral fans must start to wonder.
Not only that, but where have these ‘debt free’ claims come from? Who has actually told us that it is a fact that we are free of debt?
And whilst the majority of fans are happy to label him as a liar and a cheat, they seem accepting of this statement as being the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
Even if the club are debt free, what money do we actually have? As the recent financial reports show that we have once again only avoided making a loss because of player sales.
The summer proved that the club have no money to spend, Warnock had to wheel and deal to make sure he could bring players in and you have to admire the job he did considering the circumstances, but what good will that prove to be if the club plunge into administration by the end of the season?
Falling attendances, dwindling interest and a fan base devoid of hope. Three ingredients that will only serve to cause further problems for the club financially.
The fans have spent the last few months willing the takeover by GFH Capital to be completed with the promise of investment that will ensure our return to the Premier League, though the recent reports that have surrounded the finances of GFH make those promises seem worryingly hard to fulfill GFH seem to have little financial clout on their own, we can only hope that they have wealthy financial backers ready to plough money into the club.
Either way, Bates will leave. Leeds entering administration would be his 3rd strike, and he would no longer pass the Football Leagues ‘fit and proper persons test’.
How he passed it in the first place is anyone’s guess.
Twitter – @giddy_goose