Stricken Portsmouth avoid liquidation
Financially stricken Portsmouth, FA Cup winners in 2008, avoided going into liquidation on Friday when the last of the League One club's top earners agreed to leave.
Portsmouth have been struggling to cope with massive debts since crashing out of the Premier League in 2010 and their cash crisis looked set to prove fatal when administrator Trevor Birch claimed all senior players had to be off the payroll by Friday or he would have no option but to close the club down.
But, with the threat of liquidation growing by the hour, former Stoke midfielder Liam Lawrence, the last of Portsmouth's big earners, came to an agreement to leave Fratton Park, 24 hours after ex-Chelsea defender Tal Ben Haim did the same.
That means 2010 FA Cup runners-up Portsmouth, who are about to start their first season in the third tier of English football for 29 years, are safe from extinction for now and former owner Balram Chainrai's company Portpin are in pole position to take over at Fratton Park.
Birch said: "We have now successfully completed agreements with all of the first-team squad and met the major condition of the offer from Portpin, which formed the basis for the CVA proposal.
"We will now aim to finalise our discussions with Portpin with a view to completing the sale of the club as soon as possible.
"The intention is to push this through early next week in order to ensure that player recruitment can begin as quickly as possible for the start of the new season."
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