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Triesman calls for greater wealth distribution

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and SD merged to become the FSA in 2019.

Football Association chairman Lord Triesman has called for a more equitable distribution of finance between football clubs in England.

Coming less than a month after Triesman’s last spat with Richard Scudamore the FA chairman’s view that Premier League clubs should increase their contribution to the Football League – currently £90million over three years – is bound to cause friction.

“There needs to be a greater equality of resources available to the individual clubs, if you have huge disparities in resource you are going to have significant differences in the quality of the playing staff,” said Triesman.

He said: “The Premier League, to its credit, does distribute money but it is only a degree of equalisation. You could imagine greater solidarity payments between different parts of the system.

“One of the things that concerns me a great deal is the financial frailty as you go further down the pyramid through many clubs which are absolutely integral to their towns.”

In the speech at the FT Sport Summit Triesman also backed Uefa president Michel Platini’s proposals to restrict the selling of under-18’s believing it would encourage clubs to develop more English talent.

Premier League officials believe the idea is impossible under EU law and are concerned as it would stop foreign prospects such as Cesc Fabregas being snapped up by English clubs. Laws vary from country to country but often clubs in England can offer professional contracts at an earlier stage than many of their foreign counterparts.

But it is Triesman’s views on redistribution which are most likely to catch the headlines, and they were warmly welcomed by FSF chair Malcolm Clarke.

“Any pyramid relies on a strong base for its survival and football is no different. The success and long-term stability of lower league football should be important to all supporters.

“It is also encouraging to see Lord Triesman acknowledging that football clubs are integral to an area’s identity. Football clubs are not Tesco – they are vital to a community’s cultural heritage,” said Clarke.

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