Derby face the very real prospect of dropping into League One, having been docked 12 points on Wednesday and slipping to the foot of the Championship table.
That comes after the Rams were appointed business advisory firm Quantuma as administrators. As a result, the EFL have been left with no option but to impose a points penalty for such a move.
Wayne Rooney’s side have taken 10 points from eight games so far. However, they now find themselves six points adrift of Nottingham Forest, who were previously bottom of the table. It means they drop to minus-two points – and are nine adrift of 22nd-placed Peterborough.
“Covid-19 has had a significant impact on the finances of the club and its long-term ability to continue in its current form.
“We recognise that with the commencement of the 2021/22 season last month, this news will be of concern to stakeholders and fans, in addition to the city of Derby and the wider football community.
“We are in the early stages of assessing the options available to the club. We’d like to invite any interested parties to come forward.
“Our immediate objectives are to ensure the club completes all its fixtures in the Championship this season and finding interested parties to safeguard the club and its employees.”
The EFL subsequently confirmed the points penalty had been applied, and said it had already held talks with the administrators. Further talks are planned with supporters’ group Rams Trust, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, as well as local MPs.
EFL chief executive Trevor Birch said: “This is a challenging and concerning period for everyone associated with the club. In particular, the staff and supporters. It is our intention to work proactively with the administrators and all relevant parties. The objective is to secure a long-term and viable future for Derby County.
“We will endeavour to provide timely and relevant updates as appropriate.”
Derby remain under transfer embargo
The Rams announced late on Friday night they had made the “tough decision” to file notice and appoint administrators.
Derby are already under a transfer embargo. They also potentially face an additional points deduction for previously breaking the EFL’s financial rules.
Rooney’s side escaped relegation from the Championship on the final day of last season. That’s after a 3-3 Pride Park draw against Sheffield Wednesday.
The club then avoided a points deduction, which would have sent them down. That’s after the EFL decided against appealing a decision to only fine them for failing to comply with finance rules.
However, they now have it all to do to ensure survival and avoid dropping into League One.