Portsmouth handed new date after adjournment

PORTSMOUTH will be back in the High Court later this month after the case brought against them by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs was adjourned yesterday.

HMRC chiefs challenged the club’s decision to go into voluntary administration last Friday and also questioned the validity of Andrew Andronikou’s appointment as administrator.

It was suggested that Andronikou, of accountancy firm UHY Hacker Young, had links with Portsmouth owner Balram Chainrai, thus throwing his independence into question.

Simon Barker QC, representing Portsmouth, said: “There is no reason to impugn the conduct of these administrators at all. There is no reason the court should have any doubts about their appointment and independence.”

Portsmouth also revealed to the court a proposal to sell their Fratton Park ground to Chainrai for £10m and rent it back for £1.2m a year.

On adjourning the case for two weeks to allow Portsmouth to prepare a response to the allegations, Mr Justice Norris added: “A shadow has been cast over the existing appointment of the administrators and it is clear that shadow should be removed as quickly and cheaply as possible.”

In the meantime, administrator Andronikou insists its business as usual at the club. “We are all very relaxed,”?he added. “It doesn’t affect things whatsoever. In terms of what I am doing everything is continuing as normal.”