Hearts served with winding-up order
Hearts have warned fans the club might not survive until the end of the month after being hit with a winding-up order over a tax bill of almost £450,000.
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The Clydesdale Bank Premier League club issued a plea for "emergency backing" after confirming action by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs at the Court of Session in Edinburgh.
Hearts said they were attempting to negotiate a payment plan with the tax authority over the matter, which is unrelated to a £1.75million HMRC bill the club are challenging at a tax tribunal.
But they later asked supporters to find the money to see the club through the crisis in an appeal described as "not so much a request as a necessity".
Hearts urged supporters to buy tickets for forthcoming home matches and invest in a recently-launched share issue.
The board statement added: "Without the support of fans there is, as we issue this note, a real risk that Heart of Midlothian Football Club could possibly play its last game next Saturday, 17 November, against St Mirren.
"This isn't a bluff, this isn't scaremongering, this is reality."
The club have faced growing problems meeting wage bills in the last 12 months and are currently under an SPL transfer embargo following consecutive late monthly payments to some players and coaches.
This came despite the club reducing their wage costs significantly in the summer with the departure of a number of experienced players.