Last updated : 15 January 2004 By Editor
Barring any sensational last minute developments Leeds United will go into administration on Monday. All rescue packages have failed/were only specualtion and apparently the players will be asked to take a 30% deferment of their wages.

We also understand from a trusted source that Alan Smith has a clause in his contract meaning that if he doesn't accept this he has the option to leave for free.

Meanwhile Reuters reports:

Leeds United could become the first premier league club to go into administration if they do not meet Monday's creditor deadline and their financial problems would dwarf those suffered by other English sides. Leeds have debts of over 80 million pounds ($147.2 million) and are facing relegation.

Bill Gerrard, Professor of Sports Management and Finance at Leeds University Business School, believes it would not be in the interest of creditors for the club to call in the administrators just yet, however.

"I'm still cautiously optimistic they will get an extension to the standstill agreement and get an outline deal.

"I still think that the new investors and creditors see administration as the worst case scenario and that will push them towards getting some sort of agreement.

"If Leeds were to go there and get a victory and the teams above them lose...the possibilities of relegation, although still high, would be softened and give everybody a feel-good factor for the negotiations.”

Yesterday the Guardian reported:

Leeds United have been secretly hawking their goalkeeper Paul Robinson to their Premiership rivals, including Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City, despite assuring their supporters that no more of the club's so-called "crown jewels" would be sold.

While City have turned to David James of West Ham United, Tottenham are among a clutch of clubs with a firm interest in Robinson, having been approached by high-ranking officials from Elland Road over the past fortnight.

The Yorkshire club, with debts of more than £80m, could go into administration unless a buyer rescues them before Monday. But the news of Robinson's availability is guaranteed to provoke a furious reaction at Elland Road, coming only a fortnight after the acting chairman Trevor Birch assured shareholders at a heated AGM that they were not actively trying to sell players.

Should Robinson leave it will also be seen as a major setback in their fight against relegation to the First Division, with the teenager Scott Carson the only other recognised goalkeeper on the club's payroll.

The Leeds players are becoming so concerned about the club's precarious position that Mick McGuire, the deputy chief executive of the Professional Footballers' Association, was invited to the club's training ground yesterday to meet a delegation led by David Batty, the players' PFA representative.

It is understood that he could not offer any assurances that the PFA would be able to pay the players' wages if the club were unable to. That would be possible for a club in the lower divisions, it was explained, but some of the salaries at Elland Road are close to £70,000 a week.