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Bolton players refuse to train over unpaid wages

The Championship club face a High Court hearing on Wednesday.

Bolton players have gone on strike over unpaid wages (Clint Hughes/PA)
Bolton players have gone on strike over unpaid wages (Clint Hughes/PA)

Bolton players are refusing to train until wages are paid for March, Press Association Sport understands.

Staff have not been paid on time for a second month in a row as uncertainty continues to cloud the Sky Bet Championship club, who have declined to comment.

On Wednesday, the High Court will hear a winding-up petition issued by HMRC over an unpaid tax bill of £1.2million, having adjourned the case on March 20.

Bolton had told the High Court they were in the process of selling the club but no deal has been finalised, leaving staff facing late payment once again.

Players have been angered by the lack of information they have received regarding a potential takeover or Wednesday’s hearing, leading them to take action on behalf of all club staff.

Wanderers still face the threat of liquidation or administration, but the adjournment means they have avoided a 12-point deduction this season.

Such a deduction may prove academic anyway, with Bolton still five points adrift of safety in the Championship despite Saturday’s 2-1 away win over QPR which led the London club to sack Steve McClaren.

Bolton have already faced winding-up petitions over unpaid tax and VAT five times in the last 18 months.

They won a similar stay of execution in the High Court three years ago to allow previous owner Sports Shield BWFC to complete a last-minute takeover.

Current owner Ken Anderson bought a stake in the club during that buyout and took majority control in 2017 after Sports Shield went into liquidation.

Anderson, who owns 94.5 per cent of the club’s shares, has increasingly struggled to finance the running costs.

The players were paid their February salaries late and the training ground was closed for a day earlier last month, while there was doubt over a recent game against Millwall going ahead due to concerns over policing costs.

Bolton also face further legal action from League Two side Forest Green, who have confirmed to Press Association Sport that they have started proceedings over the failed transfer of striker Christian Doidge.

PA

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