CRYSTAL Palace face a 10-point penalty and an imminent exodus of their best players after falling into administration yesterday.
The Championship club are around £30m in debt, have failed to pay their players on time twice already this season and are due in court today to face a winding-up order from HM Revenue and Customs.
A 10-point penalty – the standard punishment from the Football League in such cases – would plunge Palace from the fringes of the play-off places into a relegation scrap.
The urgent need to repay creditors is also likely to mean the sale of sought-after young forward Victor Moses will be rushed through before Monday’s transfer deadline.
A statement from Palace last night confirmed Brendan Guilfoyle, Chris White and John Russell of the P&A Partnership had been appointed administrators. “The administrators have been appointed to rescue the club and reconstruct its finances and will be urgently seeking buyers,” it added. “This club has been in the spotlight for some months with creditors pressing for payments and players anxious about their wages,” said Guilfoyle. “Our role now is to find a buyer quickly to provide certainty for the employees, players and fans for the future.
“We are hoping our appointment will be short-lived as we understand there are many interested buyers.”
Moses is their most saleable asset, although winger Darren Ambrose could also move. Nigerian-born Moses has impressed this season, attracting the attention of Arsenal, Liverpool, Barcelona and Real Madrid.