Leeds, Leicester and other clubs who can give Derby hope as they battle administration

Derby face a terrifyingly uncertain future after entering administration and being deducted 12 points by the Football League. But that doesn't mean all hope is lost.

The soccer world was shaken last week when Derby County entered administration. A hefty 12 points deduction followed and with it almost certain relegation to League One.

It is the first time in a while that one of England's biggest clubs and best-supported clubs has been forced into administration, providing a stark reminder of the financial perils clubs can face as they chase Premier League riches.

That said, there are plenty of clubs who can offer Derby fans hope too.

Leeds United

If you are old enough, Leeds United are the financial crisis club of English soccer.

"Should we have spent so heavily in the past?" asked chairman Peter Risdale as he announced the administration. "Probably not, but we lived the dream, we enjoyed the dream!"

He was right, too. Leeds were the club that got carried away with the Premier League riches at the turn of the millennium. They assembled a brilliant team, challenged for the Premier League title, and reached a Champions League semi-final.

It was completely unsustainable, though. They had to start disassembling their team to recoup some money, yet it was never enough. After they were relegated from the Premier League in 2004, they sold their ground and training ground too, and that wasn't enough either.

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Leeds quickly became Championship strugglers as they battled to keep costs down, and with relegation all but assured in 2007 they entered an administration that officially condemned them to the third tier for the first time in their history.

It has taken Leeds this long to repair the financial damage of that era and get themselves back in the Premier League, but they showed it could be done.


The Saints are a good solid Premier League club nowadays, but only after the maneuvered themselves through some serious financial problems.

In April 2009, Southampton were headed into League One with a points deduction following their decision to place the club in administration.

A month later, things were so bad the club were asking staff to work for free as a 'a gesture of goodwill' will the administrator warned bankruptcy was 'imminent' without a buyer.

Two years later they had achieved promotion back to the Championship, and they immediately stepped back into the Premier League too where they have remained since.


The Bournemouth story is so far-fetched you'd probably not believe it if it happened in fiction.

In 2008, it looked for all the world that Bournemouth would be going out of business altogether. They had been relegated to League Two and were close to being stopped from even completing that season due to the financial problems.

The Cherries were eventually allowed to continue - but only with a 17-point penalty. That left them in a perilous position, and they remained there until Eddie Howe took over to became the Football League's youngest manager at 31.

At the time it looked like a desperate last throw of the dice by a doomed club. They were ten points adrift of safety, but he expertly guided them out of the drop zone.

Even then, they were ten minutes from dropping out of the Football League on the final day before a Steve Fletcher winner against Grimsby.

Six years later, Bournemouth were a Premier League club.

Crystal Palace

It's becoming harder to imagine a club more settled in the mid-table comfort of the Premier League these days than Crystal Palace, but it wasn't always like that.

Palace endured more than a decade of financial crisis at the turn of the century as they were twice forced into administration.

The first of those came in 1999 and it was before sanctions, so it wasn't too damaging. However, when a creditor forced them into administration again in 2010 the Eagles were hit with a 10-point penalty and had to sell top players such as Victor Moses and Jose Fonte.

That saw Steve Parish come into the club, and Palace have been on apparently unshakable foundations ever since.

Leicester City

When the stories were written about the extraordinary rise that saw Leicester City become Premier League champions, the part about administration never really got mentioned.

Interestingly, it was Leicester entering administration in the 2002/3 season that prompted the points deduction rules we see today.

The Foxes were flying high in the Championship in October 2002, but were struggling financially. They found themselves with debts £30million, and the collapse of broadcast partner ITV Digital had wreaked financial havoc throughout the Football League.

Leicester went into administration, but there were no real penalties that came with it and they were able to maintain their promotion push and return to the Premier League.

That was little more than the end of the prologue in the Leicester tale to be fair. Six years later they were in the third tier of English soccer and the real fairy-tale story began.

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