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Oct 28, 2009

Premier League place embargo on Portsmouth

The Premier League have confirmed that an embargo has been placed on Portsmouth that prevents the club from registering any new players, but chief executive Peter Storrie has told ESPN Soccernet that the issue will be "sorted out".

Portsmouth have confirmed that the issue relates to the club failing to meet outstanding payments on previous purchases - believed to be the signings of Glen Johnson from Chelsea in the summer of 2007 and Lassana Diarra from Arsenal in January 2008.

It is also believed that the issue came to light on Monday when the Premier League prevented Pompey from signing free agent Eugen Bopp, who played under manager Paul Hart at Nottingham Forest.

Premier League spokesman Dan Johnson said: "We can confirm that there is an embargo on Portsmouth registering any new players."

But Pompey's fire-fighting chief executive Storrie told ESPN Soccernet: "It is a technicality, no more than that."

Storrie, who has a habit of pulling Pompey out of one crisis after another, was on a day off when the news broke and did not seem too perplexed about yet another financial problem to hit the south coast club.

ESPN Soccernet exposed the true financial chaos at the club before Storrie helped lure Ali Al-Faraj, the third owner in a matter of months, to Fratton Park at the start of October. But the short-term cash-flow crisis has taken another turn with the Pompey needing to pay off debts to other clubs that are still owed money.

Pompey's new owners are dealing with the myriad of debts left by the previous two owners but a Fratton Park insider said of the latest development: "We don't consider it very much of a big issue, as we cannot buy players until January anyway. As for Bopp, he was only cover for the Carling Cup tie and unlikely to feature in the Premier League in any case."

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