Premiership club’s bosses ‘working through options’ in bid to avoid administration

Worcester Warriors are hoping to avoid entering administration following a winding-up petition over unpaid tax.

The Premiership club revealed last week that they were in dialogue with HMRC, with Warriors saying they are on the brink of new funding having suffered “unavoidable delays”.

After a weekend of rumours and speculation about the club’s immediate future, owners Jason Whittingham and Colin Goldring have now issued a statement.

They said: “Over the past week a lot of work has been done away from the media spotlight to try to navigate the club through the challenges that we currently face.

“That work continues, discussions are on-going and we are reviewing the options available to the club.

“We continue to work closely with HMRC, Premiership Rugby, the RFU and DCMS to find the best solution to the situation.

“We are now working through a number of options with our advisers.

“These include solutions for keeping rugby at Sixways and we will communicate further as soon as a decision has been finalised.

“We also greatly appreciate the messages of concern and support that we have received from across the rugby world and the wider sporting community.”

Media reports over recent days have suggested the possibility of the club being put into administration this week after the company running Warriors’ operations, WRFC Trading Limited, was handed a winding-up petition by HMRC last Tuesday.

The company’s accounts for 2020 show it had yet to pay £2.3m in taxes and its 2021 accounts are now overdue.

The current figure for unpaid tax has been reported by some newspapers as being as high as £6m.

Warriors, along with many other businesses and most sports clubs, have been under pressure due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the rise in the cost of living.

The club retained its staff but lost income during the various lockdowns during which the overwhelming majority of matches were played behind closed doors.

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