UK - Scheme trustees hold the fate of Bradford City Football Club in their hands.
Administrators have asked the club’s landlord, the Gibb Pension Fund, to waive the £300,000 rent on the Valley Parade ground next season.
And they warn the club will be forced to close unless the pension fund agrees.
A spokesman for administration firm Kroll said: “It has got to a very worrying and sad stage. We have been in talks for several weeks but we need a formal answer, otherwise the club will face closure.”
Fund chairman Gordon Gibb dipped into his family’s pension to buy Valley Parade while he was chairman of the football club last year. He paid off the £6.3m owed to mortgage lender Lombard and leased the ground back to the club at a nominal rate for 50 years.
The move to break into the pension fund was backed by Gibb’s mother and sisters who run Yorkshire theme parks Flamingo Land and Pleasure Island with him.
Bradford, relegated from the first division last season, owes more than £30m and is in its second period of administration since May 2002.
If the pension scheme refuses the rent-free request, the club would become the first to be expelled from the Football League because of insolvency since Maidstone United in 1992.
The top stories this week were the High Court's decision to block the £12bn annuity transfer from Prudential to Rothesay Life, and a separate court ruling that 'raises the bar' for pension rectification exercises.
Guaranteed minimum pension (GMP) equalisation has soared to the top of pension schemes' to-do lists, with 58% stating it is a priority project, research from Equiniti has revealed.
Professional Pensions is holding its defined contribution (DC) conference on 4 September.