Steve Diamond took charge of a Worcester Warriors game for the first time as director of rugby at Brentford on Saturday, having previously been interim boss
Steve Diamond took charge of a Worcester Warriors game for the first time as director of rugby at Brentford on Saturday, having previously been interim boss

Worcester boss Steve Diamond is hopeful that the Premiership club could have new investment in the next 96 hours.

But the Warriors director of rugby has also warned that there remains a very real chance that they could still fold.

“It is a possibility, given the dire position that we’re in,” Diamond told BBC Radio Five Live.

But Warriors co-owner Jason Whittingham has told BBC Hereford & Worcester that there have been advanced negotiations with one of three prospective buyers.

Worcester have faced the threat of going into administration, since receiving a winding-up petition from HMRC over an unpaid £6m tax bill – and are believed to owe in excess of £25m.

In an interview with BBC Hereford & Worcester, Whittingham spoke at length and gave in-depth details of his and co-owner Colin Goldring’s battle to keep Premiership rugby at Sixways.

Whittingham insisted that “going into administration would make the preservation of rugby remote” at the club and that “this is not about throwing millions about. It’s simply about the preservation of rugby”.

Co-owner Jason Whittingham (right) celebrated winning the Premiership Cup in May with former Warriors director of rugby Alan Solomons
Co-owner Jason Whittingham (right) celebrated winning the Premiership Cup in May with former Warriors director of rugby Alan Solomons

He said that “there are three viable bidders” and that he would know more “in the next 72 to 96 hours” in terms of the finances and whether Worcester’s opening home game against Exeter on Sunday can go ahead.

He also said that, in response to one approach, he had “repeatedly made requests for information that they have the clout, but nobody has stepped forward from them with a viable proposition”.

‘One way or another, something has to happen’

Speaking after the London Irish game, Diamond said: “The owners have gone public and said that, in the next 72 hours, there may be some news of a potential investor. This news is a boost but we don’t want a false dawn.

“I have been around rugby for a long time and there aren’t too many people who want to put their hand in their pockets and buy rugby businesses. If the owners have found somebody then great and no doubt they will speak to me.

“Hopefully there’s some good news coming. If that’s what Jason’s said, then I have to go with what he’s saying. You have to believe they’re trying to bring in new finance or sell the club, whichever way.

“But one way or another, something has to happen.”

With Worcester’s September payroll fast approaching, the Warriors staff have still not been fully paid for August, they played in last season’s kit at Brentford as they cannot yet afford to pay for a new strip and their coach was paid for by club sponsor Adam Hewitt.

Jason Whittingham was talking to BBC Hereford & Worcester’s Andrew Easton.

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