Toffees in financial turmoil
The full scale of the financial plight which has blighted Everton for years and hamstrung David Moyes in the transfer market this summer has been laid bare in a leaked conversation in which chairman Bill Kenwright admits proceeds from player sales have gone to satisfy the club's banks, who are now "desperate" to see the club sold, writes rory smith.
Kenwright made a series of startling admissions in a three-and-a-half-hour meeting with three representatives of fans group The Blue Union, revealing he has had to plead not to be forced to cash in on his squad this summer.
Crucially, the club admit they are not able to dispute the content of a transcript of the discussion, published on the website of The People's Group, a movement dedicated to highlighting "the failings of Everton's board".
It is that transcript which contains a stark description of the financial reality facing Everton and represents an acute embarrassment for Kenwright.
His admission that the £3m received for Steven Pienaar in January has been used to reduce Everton's debt and his acknowledgment he has had to plead with his bankers not "to kill" the club this season suggests the situation is more immediate than was thought.
"We have just done a document to the bank which says you cannot stop the football club from trading," Kenwright is quoted as saying.
"Do you not think the bank does not ask me every week how we are doing with the sale? They are desperate. So what I have told them is, 'don't kill us this season'.
"I will not sell (Phil) Jagielka, just as last year I was hung, drawn and quartered for not selling (Mikel) Arteta. You know the four players we do not dare sell: (Leighton) Baines, Jagielka, (Marouane) Fellaini and Tim Howard.
"The Pienaar money has gone to the bank." (© Daily Telegraph, London)