Day: June 4, 2010

Will Deep Debt At Deepdale Leave Preston In Deep…?

Before the news broke of a “possible offer” for Preston North End, I couldn’t quite understand why “leisure tycoon” Trevor Hemmings hadn’t bought the club months, maybe years ago. He has, after all, paid for it, many times over. Preston North End, founder members of the Football League, have been spending more than they have been earning for a very long time. They are the sort of club Premier League supremo Richard Scudamore might label a “victim” of the “debt-is-bad” culture which he believes is wrong, for reasons which are not obvious on Planet Earth. But they have been increasingly financially reliant on Hemmings since he became Preston North End plc’s largest individual shareholder in 2004. And their financial decline can be charted by his ever-increasing number of loans to the club. The loans started as “funding for on-going working capital requirements.” But in more recent months, as Preston’s financial position became more perilous, the announcements got more specific. They read: “The loan will be used by the Company…” to “meet the cost of the players’ wages” or “to make payments to HMRC in respect of PAYE tax deductions and National Insurance.” Each concluded with an increasingly weary “the total amount to date that has been advanced…now totals (insert figure)…including accrued interest.” And they served as a build-up to the almost inevitable winding-up petition from HM Revenue and Customs,...

Read More

World Cup Preview: Group H

The 19th World Cup Finals kick-off in just seven days, and the impending five week surge of ill-informed tabloid jingoism is tantalisingly within reach. Trying hard to not get carried away, but gnawing at the rope which tethers him to his kennel with excitement nevertheless is Dotmund, who today completes his in-depth look at the runners and riders for South Africa 2010. Today, a sneaky peak at the reigning European champions, a second-time Central American qualifier, a team from a country with a lot of cheese in and a team from a country which is quite long and thin.

Read More