A petition to put Northampton Town Football Club into administration would be heard in the High Court on November 27, a borough council spokesperson has confirmed.
Yesterday it was revealed Northampton Borough Council had lodged a petition to seek the administration of the League Two side, in a bid to buy more time to pull together a rescue plan for the club.
The club is due to face a winding-up petition at the High Court in London on Monday, November 16, brought by the HMRC over £166,000 of unpaid taxes.
A report that went to the council’s cabinet meeting last night revealed hat “experienced professional advisors,” working for the council approached HMRC to see if the taxman would adjourn the hearing.
But this has not been agreed by HMRC, which still wishes to proceed on Monday.
While the council has been asked to fight the liquidation in court and apply for an adjournment of the winding up application, it says “this may not be successful”.
The council has, under advice, made its own petition for administration in relation to NTFC and a spokesperson for the authority has now confirmed this would be heard in the High Court on Friday, November 27.
The report to last night’s borough council cabinet meeting by the authority’s chief executive David Kennedy, said the “advice is that the court will give precedence to a petition for administration over a petition for winding up of NTFC.”.
The report says the council had also taken advice from the Football League and been told that issuing the petition would not result in a points deduction for the club.
The initial 12-point deduction would only happen if rescue efforts fail and the club is eventually placed in administration.
However a statement by the Football League yesterday stated that it has “not provided any advice to Northampton Borough Council regarding Northampton Town”.
“As yet there has been no formal dialogue at all between the two parties.”
However it went on to say: “The proposed administrator did contact the League seeking clarification as to whether the act of lodging a petition for administration would, in itself, warrant the application of sporting sanctions.”
The League confirmed that it would not, but such sanctions would only apply in the event of the club going into administration.
The main role of the administrator is to make sure creditors are paid back as much of the money they are owed using the club’s assets – including its players.
Football League rules also state any buyer looking to take over at Cobblers would need to be able to pay the club’s creditors a minimum of 35p in the pound over three years (or 25p on transfer of share) or face a further 15-point deduction at the start of the season following.