Wembley Stadium construction firm Multiplex posted "very disappointing" results yesterday as it counted the cost of problems on the flagship project.
The group made substantial losses on the football stadium as the Australian firm's construction division revealed a full-year deficit of 62 million Australian dollars (£26.1 million), compared with profits of 73 . 2 million dollars (£30.8 million) in 2004.
The stadium scheme has been hit by delays and costoverruns, although Multiplex said it was on track to hand it over by the recently-revised deadline of the end of March. It is under pressure to complete the scheme in time so preparations can begin for the FA Cup Final, which takes place in May.
It added it had set aside a further 8.6 million dollars (£3.6 million) as a contingency against risks that remain until the completion of the stadium, which will hold 90,000 spectators as the updated home of the England football team.
Overall, Multiplex made profits of 148.1 million dollars (£62.4 million) but this did not please chief executive Andrew Roberts.
He said: "The result is very disappointing and has been significantly impacted by the losses experienced at Wembley National Stadium.
"It is unfortunate that the Wembley performance undermined the strong contribution from other parts of the group."
Multiplex said new risk control measures had been introduced in the construction division and that it now only had one loss-making project on its books, which was Wembley.
Among problems to affect the stadium project - valued at about 1.2 billion dollars (£500.3 million) to the company - Multiplex incurred litigation and higher costs after a change of steel contractor.
The FA has provisionally booked Cardiff's Millennium Stadium in case Wembley is not completed.
But Mr Roberts insisted: "The FA has booked, on a contingent basis, Cardiff Millennium Stadium. But their expectation, as well as ours, is that the FA Cup will be held at Wembley in May 2006."