Ilkeston FC have been suspended from the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League as a knock-on effect of Che Adams' switch from Sheffield United to Birmingham City.
The Evo-Stik League announced today Ilkeston had been suspended due to 'a breach of rules and regulations,' putting their opening day game against Stafford Rangers on Saturday in serious doubt.
Ilkeston have issued a statement in response, revealing several clubs to whom the club owes money have called in debts in the days following Adams' move to Birmingham. The suspension from the league comes as a result of having debts called in.
The Blades signed Adams from Ilkeston in 2014 and his subsequent switch to Birmingham puts the Derbyshire club in line for a sell-on fee. Speculation has suggested they would receive up to £400,000 as part of the move, which is understood to be valued at more than £1.8m.
But such figures have been rubbished by Ilkeston, who also insist they are working towards a swift resolution to the issue.
The club statement read: “It is a fact that the club owes money to football creditors (namely, clubs) in relation to historic matters and that – in view of the speculation about the club now being in receipt of substantial funds following the sale of Che Adams from Sheffield United to Birmingham City - debts have been chased more aggressively.
“This has resulted in our suspension, but provided we are able to pay the football clubs what they are due, it will be lifted.
“It was always our intention to settle those debts as soon as possible and it is only the perception that we are now in funds (we are not) that has prompted this unfortunate development.
“It is true that the club will at some point receive a sell-on fee as a result of the Adams transfer, although we are not at liberty to comment on the extent of the sum that will be received.
"Speculation that we have seen is (sadly) way off the mark, and we will be receiving a lot less than is being mooted - but nonetheless the sum received will be put to good use in not only clearing any historic debts but also assisting the club’s stability going forwards.
“In the meantime, the club will be doing all it can to ensure that the suspension is lifted, hopefully in good time for this weekend’s important fixture to proceed. We will be making no further comment at this stage.”
The initial statement from the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League stated: “Following a breach of the EVO-STIK Northern Premier League’s rules and regulations, the licence issued to Ilkeston FC has been suspended with effect from 5pm on Wednesday 10 August 2016.
“The club will not be able to participate in any footballing activity from this date until such time as all of the breaches have been resolved to the satisfaction of the EVO-STIK NPL.
“This may well have an impact on Premier Division fixtures and clubs who may be affected will be advised as soon as possible.
“Ilkeston FC do have the right of appeal to the Football Association and the EVO-STIK NPL will not be making any further comments at this stage.”