Portsmouth will go into administration on Friday unless a buyer comes forward before then, the club's owner has announced.
Hong Kong businessman Balram Chainrai is in talks with four different consortia about a takeover but admits it is "unlikely" a deal will be done.
With a winding up order due in the High Court on Monday, the decision has been taken to go into administration instead to save the club.
A statement released to Press Association Sport said: "Businessman Balram Chainrai, the owner of Portsmouth Football Club, has today served notice that the club will go into Administration unless new owners can be found by Friday (February 26).
"Mr Chainrai and fellow investors from his Portpin investment vehicle, are in London to continue talks with representatives of four different groups interested in buying the South Coast club, but have had to reluctantly accept that it is now unlikely a deal can be done before a winding up hearing due to be heard in the High Court on Monday."