ROWETT STAYS POS­I­TIVE DE­SPITE TEN-POINT THREAT

The Football League Paper - - NEWS -

BIRM­ING­HAM City boss Gary Rowett is hop­ing his side will not have to face a ten-point de­duc­tion af­ter the Blues’ fi­nan­cial woes came back to haunt them yet again.

Par­ent com­pany Birm­ing­ham In­ter­na­tional Hold­ings Limited went into re­ceiver­ship on Tues­day, and while Birm­ing­ham could face a points penalty and slide back down into rel­e­ga­tion trou­ble, Rowett be­lieves that can be avoided.

“That’s some­thing we’re hop­ing won’t hap­pen,” he said. “I just hope peo­ple see it might be a way of mov­ing for­ward – it doesn’t mean the club sud­denly haven’t got the money to con­tinue.”

Birm­ing­ham have come on leaps and bounds un­der for­mer de­fender Rowett since his ap­point­ment in Oc­to­ber. He added: “I think we’ve made huge strides at the club.

“We were three or four points adrift of safety and now we’re sat mid-ta­ble.

“We want to achieve more now, and that’s got to be the full fo­cus on the pitch and not wor­ry­ing about any­thing off it that might spread a lit­tle bit of neg­a­tiv­ity.

“If the worst comes to the worst, which I don’t think it will, we’ll take it on the chin and crack on.”

CAN Birm­ing­ham es­cape a points de­duc­tion af­ter call­ing in the re­ceivers? Hav­ing done so purely to rid them­selves of par­a­sit­i­cal owner Car­son Ye­ung, one would cer­tainly hope so.

Ul­ti­mately, how­ever, it de­pends how dog­mat­i­cally the Foot­ball League in­ter­prets the phrase ‘in­sol­vency event’.

If the Blues are to be be­lieved, no cred­i­tors have yet been com­pro­mised. No wind­ing-up pe­ti­tion has been is­sued. No CVA mooted. And whilst re­ceivers are al­most al­ways ap­pointed to save a fail­ing busi­ness, that is not ex­clu­sively the case. Stump up enough cash and you could get them to run your cor­ner shop.

Un­der those cir­cum­stances, it is dif­fi­cult to ar­gue that the Blues are in­sol­vent. Most en­cour­ag­ingly, rule 12.3.2 states that the Foot­ball League will “have re­gard to all cir­cum­stances of the case” and con­sider the need to “pro­tect the rep­u­ta­tion of the com­pe­ti­tion”.

Given that Birm­ing­ham’s ac­tions could see the club sold, thus end­ing the League’s as­so­ci­a­tion with a con­victed money laun­derer, I’d say Blues are do­ing the League a favour. Let’s hope they see it the same way.

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