Elche this morning received confirmation from the Spanish Football League (LFP) judge, Manuel Rivero that the club is to be relegated to the second division for failing to issue their certificate of positive payment to the Spanish Inland Revenue. Last Friday the club presented an IOU to cover their tax debt which totals 3.6 million euro and agreed a repayment plan with the tax office to facilitate the outstanding debt.
A statement from the LFP read:
“As of today Elche’s debts are still outstanding and no guarantee has been offered,” a La Liga statement explained. The Social Discipline Judge has agreed to impose upon Elche CF the sanction of relegation from La Liga in view of the recidivism in the case, given that the club had been sanctioned both last season and this season as a result of serious infractions committed, in accordance with La Liga’s Law of Sport and Company Statutes.
“Likewise, the above mentioned ruling carries an added penalty for Elche CF, in the form of a fine amounting to 180,303.63 euros.”
Judge, Manuel Rivero based his decision on the outstanding debts with the tax office and that no guarantees were set in place post July 28 which was the expiry date of the IOU presented by Elche club president, Juan Anguix. The club, now aware of the verdict is planning to exhaust all possible appeal lines open to the club to desperately try and secure their place in the top flight.
This administrative demotion plunges the club into deep trouble as they now desperately need to secure 14 million euro to cover their outstanding debts to pay players, club staff and other businesses who the club holds debts with. A further demotion to 2B is another possibility if they fail to shore up these debts.
Elche stated earlier this week that they would appeal if they were relegated over their tax debts, claiming they would pay the full amount owed by next month.
As a result Basque side Eibar, who finished third from bottom, will now be handed a reprieve and see Elche go down a division instead of them.