Leeds United players have agreed to a wage deferral of “more than 20%” in an attempt to help the club avert the threat of going into administration.

The move was confirmed by players’ union representative Gordon Taylor.

Leeds have been given 1700 GMT on Friday to raise £5m and avoid administration.

Club chief executive Trevor Birch said: “The board understands this has been very difficult for the players and this request was made as an absolute last resort.

“The players’ actions demonstrate their commitment and understanding and gives Leeds United a massive lift as we look towards the rest of the season.

“There are 16 games left for Leeds United to fight for survival in the Premier League.

“The board, employees, players and supporters should now pull together and do whatever they can to achieve this goal.”

Professional Footballers’ Association chief Taylor praised the players’ actions.

He said: “It’s a large amount of money which runs into millions. It’s more than we’ve had deferred from players at other clubs in all the experience we’ve had.”

Meanwhile the club could be given until 6 February or longer to find a buyer on “achievement of certain financial and other covenants,” a statement to the Stock Exchange read.

A club statement added: “The board is now in negotiations with its principal finance creditors to seek a further extension to the existing standstill arrangements to the end of the football season.

“A further announcement will be made in this regard in due course. “