By Kevin Phillips

18th May, 2020 | 7:00am

'Massive' - Exclusive: Kevin Phillips warns Sunderland may go bust amid major development

Kevin Phillips fears Sunderland will be at risk of going bust if this season is cancelled and the next is played behind closed doors. 

The former Black Cat, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, believes it is now “unlikely” League One will finish and expects such an outcome to have “massive” economic consequences.

League One clubs failed to come to a conclusion on Friday as to how the season should end and the fate of the division remains in the balance.

Darragh MacAnthony, owner of Peterborough United issued a joint statement, on behalf of The Posh, the Black Cats, Oxford United, Portsmouth, Ipswich Town and Fleetwood Town.

The six clubs made apparent their preference for the season to be played out and avoid a points-per-game scenario which has been agreed upon in League Two.

When asked by Football Insider if the Premier League and Championship had been prioritised at the expense of League One and Two, Phillips said: “It should be the same throughout the pyramid, right down to League Two.

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“We do not want to see anybody going out of business and we have seen that with Bury.

“If the season was ended I am pretty sure there will be a few other clubs who will struggle to pay their players and go out of business. No more so than Sunderland.

“We know the financial situation they were in and they rely on the supporters getting through the turnstiles to generate revenue. It will have a major effect.

“This is a crazy situation and I fear it is very unlikely that League One will finish. It is going to have massive consequences.”

League One side Bury were expelled from the Football League last August due to financial difficulties.

The prospect of no gate and matchday revenue for the foreseeable future may see many clubs follow.

In other Sunderland news, it can be REVEALED that club are in pole position to resign striker.