Worcester stress club not in administration after DCMS letter claimed they were

·3-min read

Worcester have released a statement to make it clear they have not been placed into administration after a Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport letter suggested they had been.

The Warriors moved quickly to clarify their position which is that they are waiting for an agreement with an undisclosed buyer to be signed as they seek survival amid debts of over £25million.

“Worcester are aware of a letter that is in circulation from the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport claiming that the owners have put the club into administration. This is NOT true,” the Warriors’ statement read.

“The statement was sent out in error by DCMS who have apologised for their mistake and the distress and anxiety it has caused to our staff and suppliers at what is already an extremely stressful time.”

DCMS is understood to be looking into how the error occurred, and is continuing to work with Worcester, the Rugby Football Union and Premiership Rugby on options around their survival.

The letters were sent to supporters by email on Thursday morning in an extraordinary mistake by the Government that has left Worcester to pick up the pieces.

Worcester Warriors
Worcester Warriors (David Davies/PA)

It is another twist in a roller coaster few weeks for the club, whose home debut for the 2022-23 season against Exeter on Sunday is in serious danger of not going ahead.

While an agreement has been reached between co-owners Colin Goldring and Jason Whittingham and the undisclosed investor, the details are still being thrashed out by lawyers.

Director of rugby Steve Diamond said he is confident the Sixways clash will go ahead, yet it is the new buyer who is due to supply the finance needed to stage the game.

He said: “As far as I’m concerned the game’s on. I’ve been told nothing untoward. We’re preparing as though the game is on. We’re on BT. All buttons are being pressed.

“All money is welcomed and I think the current owners are doing everything behind the scenes to ensure that the game goes on, which means staff being paid, suppliers been paid and casual workers coming in.”

Rugby Union 2022-2023 Club by Club File Photos
Exeter rugby director Rob Baxter has a lot of sympathy for the situation Worcester are in (Simon Galloway/PA)

Assessing the current situation, Exeter rugby director Rob Baxter said: “There is a fair bit going around that the game is in doubt.

“It is out of our hands. We have just got to get on with things and prepare what we can prepare.

“Right here and now, we are preparing as though the game is on. I hope it is on, and we can get on with the season.

“Tens of people are involved in running professional rugby clubs, and to think their livelihoods could go based on them not really doing anything wrong is tough.

“It does become like an extended family, and you do feel for those people. They all have bills to pay, mortgages, commitments that they will be concerned about.

“There is a lot of compassion for that situation, and everyone feels sympathy for the position that the people within Worcester are in.

“There would be a financial cost to us (if the game is called off), but that pales into insignificance with the situation Worcester find themselves in at the moment.

“It must be a terrible scenario for everyone there. I do feel for them.”