Aston Villa owner sends message to fans over cash crisis
Aston Villa have agreed a deal with HMRC over their unpaid tax bill as owner Dr Tony Xia sent a message to fans amid a cash crisis at Villa Park.
Championship side Villa are staring into a financial meltdown after failing to secure promotion to the Premier League – having lost 1-0 in the play-off final to Fulham last month.
Villa had been given a week to settle a £4.2m unpaid tax bill by HMRC after missing a payment last Friday – but the club announced they have agreed to pay it.
The Midlands giants could face administration, or potentially a winding up order, with the club currently running a £5-6million deficit each month.
Chinese businessman Xia could be forced to sell Villa this summer, having already suspended his CEO Keith Wyness.
It opens the door for American sports investor Peter B Freund, a minority shareholder in baseball’s New York Yankees, who has been linked with a £75million takeover.
"Aston Villa Football Club can confirm that an agreement has been reached with HMRC and the club will continue to fulfil its obligations.
"The club can also announce that there are no insolvency practitioners or administration advisors working with the club.
"Owner and Chairman Dr Tony Xia would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank supporters during this difficult and unsettling time and reassure them plans are now being put in place to move the club forward."
Earlir, Xia sent a message to fans in an attempt to put their minds at ease over the future of their club.
"It has been very difficult 2weeks as I hinted earlier I was almost heartbroken by something," Xia tweeted.
"Tried my best to keep beloved AV move forward. Thanks for all ppl standing together going through the difficult time.
"It was all supporters’ encouraging words to keep me/us stronger."
Xia has previously blamed Aston Villa’s “severe” problems on Financial Fair Play rules.
But there are concerns the businessman, who has turned up at the training ground previously in a Uber, simply doesn’t have the resources or access to cash he suggested when he bought out Randy Lerner in 2016.
He has spent heavily on transfers by blowing the club’s parachute payments in the expectation of promotion.
But the final payment reduces to just £15million this summer leaving Villa with a massive black hole as many stars are on £50,000-a-week.
Mirror Sport revealed earlier this week , Villa have been attempting to ease their cash flow since February when they borrowed money and sold on their future transfer revenue on Jordan Amavi and Carlos Sanchez to an Australian bank.
Their woes have seen proposed contract talks with the likes of Alan Hutton, who is now a free agent next month, shelved and leaves the future of boss Steve Bruce increasingly uncertain too.
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