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MPs: Premier League and EFL must end “fiasco” on club survival

MPs have told Premier League and EFL football chiefs they are “on notice” to end the “current fiasco” which has seen many lower league clubs teetering on the brink of survival.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport Committee is demanding weekly updates from the leaders of the Premier League and the EFL on progress made to ensure the survival of football clubs at risk.

Premier League chief executive Richard Masters and EFL chairman Rick Parry have been asked to update MPs on every discussion held, whether internally or with Government, about what they are doing to reach agreement on the distribution of money from the Premier League to the EFL.

The group of cross-party MPs has also asked for updates on correspondence with fans to ensure they are included in the process.

“We are losing patience. Fans have waited a long time for a solution that would safeguard their clubs but all they can see is squabbling at the top of the game. Football and its followers deserve better,” said chair of the DCMS Committee Julian Knight MP.

“The current fiasco in reaching an agreement isn’t about the lack of money, but lack of leadership. We’re putting the current leaders of the Premier League and the EFL on notice.

“We want to be kept in the loop about every discussion, every meeting, every call, every email, to save clubs at risk. Nothing should be withheld from the Committee, and so that fans can see what’s going on, we’ll make these updates public.

“The predecessor DCMS Committee called for legislation to bring in an independent system of football licensing and regulation if the game wasn’t able to reform itself. That time may be fast approaching.”

What does the FSA think?

We have long argued that more independent regulation was needed in football and we welcomed the Conservative Party’s manifesto commitment to a “fan-led review” of football governance in 2019. They must now deliver upon that with a view to new, statutory legislation.

We have detailed proposals relating to finance and governance that have already been approved by members and Project Big Picture showed the urgency of this – a handful of billionaire owners must not be allowed to stitch up domestic football for their own benefit.

Thanks to Melfoody for the image (Flickr under CC licence).

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