Andrew Andronikou – the controversial figure who tried to sell a sports editor to Blackpool FC. Portsmouth fans feel Derby’s pain as Football League step in during takeover frustration
Certainly few who crossed his path during eight testing months at Fratton Park greeted his appointment at Derby in September with anything but scepticism and a shake of the head.
Now Andronikou and his fellow joint-administrators at business advisory firm Quantuma are coming under fire from Rams fans and even the Football League.
Around nine months since entering Pride Park, their bill could reportedly reach £3m – and a new ownership has still to be sealed.
With fixtures to be released on June 23, there are fears over Derby’s ongoing involvement and whether they will be able to fulfil the 2022-23 campaign.
Andronikou breezed into Fratton Park with UHY Hacker Young in February 2010 after Balram Chainrai and Levi Kushnir had put the Blues into administration.
Later that year, the administrators handed the club back over to Portpin, a decision viewed warily by some supporters and, as it turned out, for very good reason.
During Andronikou’s time at the helm, his overly-confident demeanour proved both unpopular and unlikable, particularly with club staff and others who had dealings with him.
On one occasion, during the August 2010 transfer window, he called The News’ sports editor Howard Frost, informing him Blackpool were interested in signing him and it would be in everyone’s best interests to listen.
It transpired that Andronikou mistakenly believed he was talking to Pompey striker David Nugent – and so an exclusive accidentally emerged.
When Pompey owners Convers Sports Initiatives (CSI) went into administration in November 2011, Andronikou and Portpin returned ahead of the club inevitably following suit.
As de facto administrators, UHY Hacker Young were now again at the helm, even demanding proof of funds for £100m to enable the Pompey Supporters’ Trust to be given credence.
‘Following the collapse of CSI, the club itself hadn’t yet entered administration, so I left three messages for Peter Kubik of UHY Hacker Young to call. In addition, I sent an email, which later showed a delivery receipt, so he’d read it.
‘I eventually caught up with him by ringing his mobile phone and was told that, if we wanted to be considered, we had to show proof of funds for £100m, otherwise they wouldn’t talk to us. That’s the contempt we were treated with.
‘He was not in the least bit interested in taking us seriously. The conversation started badly, deteriorated as it continued and almost ended in a row.
‘PKF and Trevor Birch were eventually appointed by the High Court as Pompey’s administrators ahead of Kubik and his partner, Andrew Andronikou, preventing them returning for a second spell here.
‘After losing out, Andronikou asked to meet the Trust, which represented a turnaround! It was held in one of Ashley Brown’s offices at IBM, in North Harbour, but we weren’t particularly interested in what he was communicating.
‘I don’t even know what he wanted to achieve; he was well out of the picture. After he’d gone we looked at each other wondering what the hell it was all about.’
As alluded to by Williams, in February 2012 Portpin failed in attempts to appoint Andronikou and UHY Hacker Young as administrators for a second time in two years.
Instead, the High Court decreed PKF should be awarded the responsibility, bringing Birch to Fratton Park – and finally ending Andronikou’s contentious Pompey association.
Now he has hit the headlines once again, this time with Derby as they battle against liquidation. Good luck to them.
A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron
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