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By ESPN Staff

Clubs face transfer embargo

Birmingham and Coventry have been placed under a transfer embargo after failing to file their club accounts on time.

The Championship clubs missed the February 29 deadline and as a result they are temporarily banned from any activity in the transfer market.

However, Coventry have moved to ease fears of financial problems at the Ricoh Arena.

In a club statement, chief executive Tim Fisher said: "We want to be 100% transparent and open about the situation so our supporters are left in no doubt about what is happening.

"Our accounts were due on February 29. As part of the accounts submission process then we have to be able to show committed funding out for the next financial year and, at this stage, we could not do this as we, the board, are still in the process of agreeing and negotiating budgets with the owner.

"There is nothing untoward about this and it is perfectly normal to be negotiating funding with the owner. We would hope to secure funding commitments in the very next few weeks.

"The owner has previously funded the club for a period of more than four years and is currently reviewing our budget proposal for the coming year. We totally understand and appreciate that supporters might be concerned, but while the situation is far from ideal, we are confident it will be resolved very soon.''

Coventry, owned by SISU, have had a history of financial problems in recent years. They avoided going into administration by just over half an hour when former Manchester City defender Ray Ranson took over the club in 2007, while they needed a cash injection from SISU last March to avoid a similar situation.

A Birmingham statement read: "Birmingham City Football Club can confirm that it has been made subject to a transfer embargo by the Football League. This is due to not hitting a 1 March 2012 deadline for submission of the company's June 2011 financial statements to the League.

"Blues LogoAs has been widely reported, Birmingham International Holdings Limited is expected to publish the financial statements by the end of April 2012.

"The delay in filing the financial statements is occasioned due to the delayed audit processes, with both the club and the group holding company having to handle a series of audit issues, together with the financial issues thrown at the club due to the arrest and freezing of the assets of the club's main benefactor and changes to banking arrangements.

"The draft financial statements are prepared and it is understood that these will be finalised and published by the end of April (as previously announced through the Hong Kong Stock Exchange).

"This short period of delay in submission, and the resulting transfer embargo, does not affect the business of the football club at this present time. Having captured the signatures of several more players in the last couple of weeks, the club is satisfied with the strength and size of the playing squad, which has been sufficiently reinforced to assist with our end of season push.''

Birmingham signed three players on Thursday, with Peter Ramage arriving on loan from QPR while Caleb Folan and Cian Hughton joined as free agents.

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