A win or a draw against Sheffield Wednesday will be enough to keep them in the Championship; however it could still prove to be a fruitless victory as they face one of their biggest challenges yet off the pitch.
Club administrator Brendan Guilfoyle only has funding until Sunday and if CPFC 2010, a consortium of wealthy fans bidding to take over the club, will not fund the day to day expenditure after that date, it looks likely that their takeover bid may collapse.
This is the second time since 1998 that the south London based club has had to navigate the swell of a financial storm. It went into administration in January and is currently looking for investors to help resurrect the club.
The £800,000 monthly wage bill is one of many factors that could be the tipping point, even if they do avoid relegation with a win against Sheffield on Sunday.
There has been much speculation surrounding potential bidders – one of whom was rumoured to be rapper P.Diddy – which has kept the club firmly in the spotlight over the past few months, and also provided a distraction from the affairs on the pitch.
Despite the immense pressure that the players and CPFC 2010 have been under, they have shown fighting spirit for the fans, with a reassuring win against West Bromwich Albion on Monday. Eagles’ supporters are among the most loyal in the soccer world and appear to be staying positive about their club regaining top form again in results and finances.
Local supporter Wes Brannigan had this to say:
“The boys have played great over these past few matches and all credit to them. We know that we can beat Sheffield on Sunday; I just hope that someone out there sees that and helps us out of this mess.”
East London Lines Sports Correspondent, Alan Clarke sheds more light on the issues facing the club.