Aston Villa today put out a short statement today (below) to say that it has at least come to an ‘agreement’ with HRMC to ease the growing concerns of the potential penalties of the club not meeting its tax requirements.
The statement below concludes with the chairman Tony Xia wanting to reassure supporters that ‘plans are now being put in place to move the club forward’.
Aston Villa Tax Statement
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.
No Plan B Reality
Lets repeat that again, ‘plans are now being put in place’.
Didn’t they have any plans after two seasons, if they didn’t get promoted?
The League – as part of the ‘fit and proper persons test’ – requires proof from the buying body that funds are in place to sustain a club for a minimum of two years. It would seem that Xia and his team, presented the English footballing bodies with the bare minimum period of projected funds/accounts.
Considering this is a two-year period that a club freshly relegated to the Championship receives substantial parachute payments, it allows for opportunist buying (which MOMS suggested the Villa purchase was, over two years ago) – essentially a gamble to get the club back into the Premier League in those two years by using (or at least being aided by) the parachute money. This of course very much spells danger in the long-run for any club overloaded with a high wage bill, if it fail to win promotion. Certainly the period over which funds need to be proven to cover, should be extended by the PL & EFL in such cases.
When MOMS and the Fan Consultation Group first met Tony Xia and then the Villa CEO Keith Wyness, back in 2016, this is how Wyness answered the following question on the kind of funding they were offering the club:
1. With conflicting reports during the takeover, and without in any way expecting to breach any individual’s privacy, what sort of funding is there now for Aston Villa?
It was confirmed by Keith Wyness that adequate funding is in place and there are several different plans depending on where the club finds itself over the coming season/s.
It was a requirement by the League that funds are available to sustain the club for a minimum of two years. Meeting this requirement was achieved with ease. Any suggestions to the contrary or regarding lack of funds during the takeover were simply rumours created by a rival bidder for the club.
It was also confirmed that we are working within the Financial Fair Play stipulations and expanding the club’s interests internationally will help this.
‘Several different plans’, that don’t seem to have covered the present situation, and when you consider some of the wage spend and contracts, it’s hard to believe such plans existed at all.
— Haz™ (@Hazza1874) June 6, 2018