Top Plymouth Argyle players consider match 'strike'

Senior players at Plymouth Argyle are considering not playing on Saturday because they have not been paid again.

The Pilgrims, who will play away against Burton Albion, will send a side out but it is not known yet which senior professionals will be involved.

"We've got bills to pay, houses to live in," said Argyle captain Carl Fletcher, who has been at the club since 2009.

"The only leg we've got to stand on really, to make a statement, is probably by not playing on Saturday."

The 31-year-old Wales cap added: "It's getting to the point that people are going to have to move out and sell their houses."

TIMELINE OF PLYMOUTH SALE

  • 4 March 2011 - Directors appoint administrators P&A Partnership
  • 14 March - confirmation of "a number of offers" for the club
  • 6 May - creditors agree deal to reduce the club's debt
  • 5 July - deal with Bishop International consortium announced
  • 12 July - squad accept deferral of wages for eighth successive month
  • 13 July - talks begin with Football League about proposed takeover
  • 4 August - administrators urge consortium to submit funds for wages in time for start of season on 6 August
  • 5 August - administrators announce deal will be done "next week"
  • 10 August - administrators take Bishop International to court in failed bid to secure cash for wages
  • 26 August - administrator approves takeover
  • 1 September - players threaten to go on strike after not being paid

The announcement that wages have not been paid comes less than a week after news that funding for a takeover  of the League Two club was in place.

Argyle is currently in administration with Gibraltar-based property firm Bishop International planning to buy Home Park and land surrounding it for around £6m, with acting chairman Peter Ridsdale then buying the club for a nominal fee.

Some players have not been paid in full since December last year. 

"We come into training every day putting in 100% and it just feels like there's nothing coming back and sometimes you've got to put your foot down," said Fletcher.

Manager Peter Reid is sticking by his players and says he understands why they are considering taking the action: "Whatever happens I'll put a team out, but I wouldn't hold anything against these players if they decided they weren't in the right state of mind to play.

"We're talking about people's livelihoods. As much as we love football and it's important to win matches, sometimes that comes second best."

Reid told BBC Spotlight that he had asked administrators on Thursday morning where season ticket money and gate receipts had gone but did not get a straight answer.

The shifting of deadlines, hollow statements and false promises has to end. The line in the sand is drawn. Plymouth Argyle supporters demand and deserve answers

Plymouth Argyle Fans Trust

Argyle's longest-serving player, and club captain, Romain Larrieu, says it is important that a deal to rescue the club is done: "We need the club to carry on for the community, for the city, for everything, but there's only so much an individual can take."

And the Plymouth Argyle Fans Trust is calling for a meeting with the administrators of the club to look at contingency options should the Bishop International deal not happen.

"We call on the administrator to meet with supporters representatives as soon as possible to discuss this situation.

"The shifting of deadlines, hollow statements and false promises has to end. The line in the sand is drawn. Plymouth Argyle supporters demand and deserve answers," the Trust said.

Attempts by the BBC to contact Argyle's administrators and Ridsdale were unsuccessful.