Administrators are winners in football debt

Football clubs may see going into administration as the safest way to stay afloat, but it doesn’t come cheap.

Luton Town went into administration on November 22nd 2007 and documents reveal that they were charged £967,540 for seven months worth of service from P&A and Brendan Guilfoyle, the chief administrator.

Insiders who were involved in the administration process at Luton told FourFourTwo: “Charges from the administrators were just under a million [pounds].

"This included some lawyers fees too because they also fought the FA on the points deduction. Guilfoyle charged £300-an-hour for his personal services.”

Guilfoyle is currently attempting to get Crystal Palace out of administration and, despite his expensive costs, people who have used him before believe that he is the man for the job.

A director of one of Guilfoyle’s projects stated: “Mr Guilfoyle tried to progress things as fast as possible at Luton, and continually sought to get the best deals for the creditors. In my opinion he was what an administrator should be.”

Recent revelations have suggested that media tycoon and lifelong Palace fan, Steve Parish, is the front runner to take over at Selhurst Park.

Sources close to Parish said: “Steve’s consortium should include Simon Jordan (the club’s main creditor) which would mean coming out with a CVA and therefore no more points deductions.

"Steve has enough cash to ensure Palace are competitive in the Championship. If he were to take over expect him to invest in facilities as much as playing staff.”

FourFourTwo understands that a deal was put to Jordan last year by Parish and a consortium of South London businessmen that offered the former chairman no cash, but to convert his debt into equity, with guarantees that he would get his money back when the Eagles next reach the Premier League.

However, Jordan rejected this offer and Palace went into administration.

It would now seem that this remains the best deal on the table. Sources involved with Steve Parish’s bid commented: “The only stumbling block on Steve’s bid is the CVA and Simon Jordan agreeing to it.”

In a strange turn of events it now appears that the life of Crystal Palace Football Club is once again in Jordan’s hands.

Reporting by Kieran Lovelock

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