Richard Scudamore canvasses opinion on new financial rules
The Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore is to visit all 20 clubs in order to assess opinion on new financial rules. It is understood that the stocktake will allow Scudamore to gauge reaction to new rules introduced in the past 18 months partly in response to opaque takeovers and the financial meltdown at Portsmouth.
They require clubs to provide future financial information, prove they are up to date with taxes, and places the onus on prospective new owners to prove they have the funds to deliver on their plans. He will also seek to discuss the impact of Uefa's financial fair play rules, which will essentially require clubs playing in Europe to break even from 2012-3. But the tour is also seen as a means of canvassing opinion on whether more should be done to save clubs from themselves – up to and including salary caps.
Having argued vociferously against them in the past on the basis that they are a clumsy instrument that would damage English club's ability to compete in Europe, Scudamore's view is not believed to have changed. He has also argued that they would mitigate against the so-called "dream factor" – the ability of the likes of Fulham to challenge the established order. Only a handful of clubs are believed to be in favour.
I don't see the problem with the rules personally, it benefits Everton in the long-term.
On a side note did anyone read about how it affects Man City?
Uefa problem for City
Delegates at the European Clubs Association congress in Geneva today were given a talk about what Uefa's new financial fair-play rules mean. Hopefully Manchester City's chief executive, Garry Cook, below, was listening carefully. Ballooning wages and amortisation charges relating to eye-watering transfer fees could derail City's attempts to break even – give or take €15m (£12.5m) a year – which from 2013 will be a prerequisite for playing in the governing body's competitions.
A proportion of City's revenues may also be disallowable. Under the new Uefa rules, sponsorship and commercial incomes from companies connected to a club's owner must be set at market rates.
Most of City's sponsors are related parties. The shirt sponsor, Etihad, is based in Sheikh Mansour's Abu Dhabi and 70% of Ferrostaal, an industrial-services company, is owned by Abu Dhabi.
The telecoms firm Etisalat has its headquarters in the United Arab Emirates. Aabar, a hydrocarbons firm, had as one of its founding investors the Abu Dhabi Investment Company, and Abu Dhabi Tourism is ... you get the picture.
So unless City's independent sponsors – Umbro, Thomas Cook, Jaguar, Malmaison, Heineken and the local radio station Key103 – are between them able to produce enough income to cover the club's inflating cost base, regualar European football may prove to be an unreachable promised land.