Finger pointing as Worcester crisis deepensREACTION: The owners of English Premiership club Worcester hit out at both players and supporters as the cr
REACTION: The owners of English Premiership club Worcester hit out at both players and supporters as the crisis around the team intensified.
Worcester has been placed into administration after being suspended from all competitions by the Rugby Football Union earlier this week.
The Warriors are burdened by debts totalling more than £25 million (US$27.9 million), including at least £6 million in unpaid tax, with growing anger expressed towards owners Colin Goldring and Jason Whittingham, who have been accused of asset-stripping the club.
But Goldring and Whittingham, responding to a television interview on Friday - in which Worcester captain Ted Hill said an apology was required "from not only the owners, but also from other people high up from the company as well" - said they were not to blame for the Warriors' plight.
In a message to the "staff, supporters and community of Worcester Warriors", the owners said they were sorry the club was in its current position, and for the "emotional distress this must have caused", but remained hopeful a new owner would be found by the administrators.
Their statement added that while Goldring and Whittingham were thankful for those fans who "turned up week in, week out", they were "sorry that there were not more, nor enough of you on a regular basis to help make the club financially viable, despite the significant personal funds we put into the club."
The owners blamed the consequences of the unforeseen COVID pandemic for Worcester's financial collapse.
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And while they thanked those staff who took a pay cut to help keep the club afloat, they were sorry "the playing squad could not accept a similar level of reduction" or, in some cases, any cut at all.
Worcester players could be released from their contracts on Wednesday when a winding-up order issued by British tax authorities is heard in court.
Two consortiums, one involving former Worcester chief executive Jim O'Toole, are reported to have expressed interest in buying the club out of administration.
Worcester is not the only one of the Premiership's 13 clubs facing potential financial collapse.
Wasps, twice European champions, announced last week their intention to appoint administrators after failing to meet a May deadline to repay £35 million in bonds, which helped finance their relocation to Midlands city Coventry from London in 2014.