FIJIAN international centre Daryl Millard could be the latest star player to leave Wakefield Trinity Wildcats.
Millard is a target for French side Catalan Dragons, who Wildcats meet in Perpignan on Saturday.
Long-serving Australian hooker/half-back Sam Obst left Wildcats two days ago to join Hull on a two-year contract and English back-rower Dale Ferguson was sold to Huddersfield Giants yesterday.
The departures have been a huge blow to Wakefield’s on-field prospects, with Wildcats already facing a points deduction after entering administration last Friday.
Wildcats boss John Kear has declined to comment, but the club’s coaching staff are understood to be deeply concerned about the loss of key players.
Until new owners are in place the club’s rugby department have no say in transfers, which are being handled by the administrators.
Peter O’Hara – of administrators O’Hara and Co – confirmed Millard could be on his way, if a realistic sum is tabled for the contracted player before a take-over of the club is completed.
He said Catalans have inquired about Millard and been told to “make me an offer”.
Potential new owners Spirit of 1873 – headed by businessman Andrew Glover – released a statement on Friday saying they had “reached an agreement” with O’Hara and Co to acquire the club.
Follow-up statements, on Monday and yesterday, said they had not been a party to the sale of Obst or Ferguson, and that the take-over was “on-going”.
But yesterday O’Hara said Glover had not attended a scheduled meeting on Monday afternoon and the sale was still up in the air.
O’Hara said he is now planning talks with the RFL to discuss “plan B” in case a take-over does not go ahead.
“The RFL have said they would fund me for a minimum of 28 days if a purchaser is not found,” he said.
“I will be talking to them to see how that would be funded.”
O’Hara said the sale of players could be avoided if a take-over was completed – and he admitted the decision of a previous prospective owner – Steve Parkin – not to go ahead had contributed to the departures of Obst and Ferguson.
He stressed: “I have got to get the best possible price.
“I have no wish to decimate the club.
“If Mr Glover had conducted himself professionally, or a deal had been done with Mr Parkin when we came out of court on Friday, he could kept who he wanted and done what he wanted.
“He (Glover) has not told me who he wants to keep and who he wants to go. There’s over 30 people on the pay role, non-playing people – at enormous cost.
“And at the moment I still don’t know what the players are entitled to, in terms of bonuses.
“Nobody has come up with any money at all.
“At the moment costs are clocking up and wages have got to be found from somewhere, let alone finding any money for creditors.
“If players go that reduces the wage bill, which has been the basis of the club’s demise.
“If I don’t make these cuts, whoever buys it is going to have to have deep pockets.”
Glover did not respond to the YEP’s request for a comment.
Meanwhile, Trinity immediately announced their intention to appeal after centre Aaron Murphy was banned for two matches and fined £300 when a RFL Disciplinary Committee meeting held last night found him guilty of a dangerous throw, lift and drop in the 29th minute of the defeat by Tigers.
The date and time of the appeal is due to be confirmed this afternoon.
And Castleford Tigers forward Steve Snitch will miss his side’s televised fixture at home to Huddersfield Giants on Saturday evening after being banned for one match for a tackle that placed undue pressure on the joints of Wakefield’s Paul Johnson during the same match in Cardiff.