News of the World settles row out of court

PUBLISHED: 10:30 28 February 2010 | UPDATED: 17:04 10 September 2010

The News of the World has issued an apology to Norwich City and its chairman Alan Bowkett.

The News of the World has issued an apology to Norwich City and its chairman Alan Bowkett.

Norwich City have settled their row with Rupert Murdoch's News of the World. The Sunday red top carried a two-paragraph apology and will also pay City a five-figure sum in damages, plus legal fees, resulting from an article they published on Sunday, January 24.

Norwich City have settled their row with Rupert Murdoch's News of the World.

The Sunday red top carried a two-paragraph apology and will also pay City a five-figure sum in damages, plus legal fees, resulting from an article they published on Sunday, January 24.

In return, City have withdrawn their threat of High Court proceedings.

The article claimed City were on the brink of financial meltdown and within days of going into administration without major new investment, which prompted an immediate response from Carrow Road, who immediately put the matter into the hands of their legal team.

A statement on the club's website said: “Norwich City Football Club are pleased to announce the successful conclusion of the libel action against News Group Newspapers Limited (the publishers of the “News of the World”), following their publication of an article on Sunday, January 24, 2010.

“A settlement has been reached which involves the publication of an apology to the Club and its Chairman Alan Bowkett, together with a payment of a five-figure sum of damages. In addition, the Club's legal costs have been paid in full.

“The club's solicitors, Leathes Prior, have confirmed that following conclusion of the settlement the High Court proceedings have been withdrawn.”

Bowkett added: “We are delighted that this matter has been sensibly resolved, that the truth has been established and that the club's reputation is restored.

“It was disappointing that the News of the World published the article in question, and faced with that article the club had no option but to stand up and protect its position. We are pleased the matter is now concluded.”

City revealed at their annual general meeting that the club's debts were now more than £23m, but they have appointed accounting firm Deloitte to advise them on bringing in new investment and are currently studing the company's latest recommendations.

The club's legal work is not yet done: they are still in negotiations with Colchester United over a settelement for manager Paul Lambert, who left the Essex club in August to take over at Carrow Road. The two sides met a week ago in an attempt to reach agreement which would avoid the need for a Football League Tribunal.

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