A winding up petition has been launched by the HMRC to recover unpaid taxes from Northampton Town Football Club at the High Court.
In a statement released by the club today, Cobblers state the HMRC is set to publish it has issued legal proceedings against the League Two side for monies outstanding.
A petition to wind up the club is set to be heard at the High Court in London on November 16.
The club statement says: “The HMRC debt is a temporary issue due to the delays in completing the takeover and during this interim period the club not receiving the investment that it needs to meet all of its commitments when they fall due.
“The club’s Chairman David Cardoza has been in talks with HMRC to resolve this matter and has advised that after discussions he put a proposal to HMRC late on Wednesday to head off these proceedings.
“This proposal was too late to prevent the proceedings being published, but the Chairman fully expects the matter to be resolved by the end of next week.”
It is understood the club has missed one payment of its tax bill, and the amount owed is likely to be under £100,000.
Regarding the sale of the club, Mr Cardoza said, “Meetings have and are continuing this week and we are very close to reaching an agreement on the sale of the club to one of a number of interested parties and we believe we will have some definite news very soon. The potential purchasers are well aware of all the issues, including the HMRC discussions.”
Thursday is also the end of the 21 day deadline set by Northampton Borough Council for the club to repay the £10.25 million loan.
“Talks have been ongoing with the Council,” said the Cobblers Chairman.
“We are putting proposals to Northampton Borough Council regarding the repayment of the loan which we hope will prove satisfactory to them and that process is ongoing as we speak.
“I fully appreciate that, off the pitch, there only seems to be bad news for supporters at the moment but we are working towards, and we believe we are close to, a conclusion on all matters that tidies up all of the issues surrounding the club and allows it to move forward to a much brighter future.”
Leader of the Labour group on Northampton Borough Council, Councillor Danielle Stone, said: “This is a shocking development from HMRC. The situation is now going from bad to worse. We need answers immediately and this is very serious indeed. The need for a public inquiry is now more urgent than ever. HMRC being involved takes things to a new level. Awful.”
A spokesman for the HMRC said: “HMRC does not in general comment on the tax affairs of individual businesses, but our aim is to efficiently collect the debts due and to prevent things deteriorating further.
“We only initiate winding up action where we believe this is the best way to protect both the interests of other taxpayers and creditors.
“Anyone who anticipates payment problems should call us as early as possible as we have an outstanding track record for supporting those with genuine problems.”