Birch fears Pompey points deduction

Trevor Birch
Trevor Birch
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Trevor Birch has admitted Pompey could still be docked points for this season, despite obtaining a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA).

Portpin’s proposals were yesterday accepted by creditors at a Fratton Park meeting.

However, an amendment was approved to allow alternative bids to be considered before the Portpin deal is completed.

In the meantime, by securing a CVA, Pompey have taken another crucial step towards securing their future and coming out of administration.

A fortnight ago, Rangers were liquidated having failed to do so.

Regardless, Birch believes there is the possibility a points deduction for the start of the League One campaign could be enforced.

And it’s a decision which lies in the hands of the Football League.

Pompey’s administrator said: ‘It is not set in stone there will now not be a points deduction.

‘It is at the Football League’s discretion when they start to consider the new owners’ proposals. Whoever buys from herein will sit down with the Football League.

‘They will look at the proposals and look at the fact we have done a CVA, which is the first step to not getting points deducted.

‘But they still have to then make a decision over possible deductions.

‘They may say we have had three administrations in the past 10 years or so and take action.

‘Some of the board of directors may look at the fact the last CVA didn’t pay a dividend. So they may take that into account.

‘There is no guarantee.

‘It is one box ticked that we are coming out with a CVA, which is in compliance with insolvency policy.

‘But there are others they can take into consideration and it is out of our hands.

‘I am hopeful that they won’t. What I am saying is there is no certainty because it is at their discretion.’

At yesterday’s CVA meeting, a Football League request for another amendment was accepted.

This stipulated that, regardless of obtaining a CVA, any subsequent action by them was ‘at their discretion’.

It’s a motion which opens up the potential for further Pompey punishment.

It also allows them to keep a tight reign on the prized ‘golden share’ which allows the club to compete.

The Blues’ decline represents a unique case and, as a result, the guidelines remain unclear.

It ensures the notion of a points deduction is not straightforward.

Last season, the Football League docked Pompey 10 points back in February after the club entered administration.

Now it is up to football’s authorities whether they will take any further action.

Birch added: ‘Each points deduction is under the circumstances of each case.

‘The Football League won’t be saying “you have a CVA, so you aren’t deducted any points”.

‘They don’t do it like that.

‘They look at the merits of each case.

‘It is entirely down to their discretion.’