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EFL Chair reacts to Football Governance Bill

19 March 2024

Club News

EFL Chair reacts to Football Governance Bill

19 March 2024

EFL Chair Rick Parry has reacted positively to the Football Governance Bill, which is being introduced in Parliament today.

The historic legislation to reform the governance of men's elite football in England and put fans back at the heart of the game comes at a critical juncture for English football, following the attempted breakaway European Super League, and a series of high profile cases of clubs being financially mismanaged or collapsing entirely.

The legislation being introduced today establishes the new ‘Independent Football Regulator’ (IFR) as a standalone body - independent of both Government and the football authorities. The body will be equipped with robust powers revolving around three core objectives: to improve financial sustainability of clubs, ensure financial resilience across the leagues, and to safeguard the heritage of English football.

Under the Football Governance Bill, new owners and directors will face stronger tests to stop clubs falling into the wrong hands, and face the possibility of being removed and struck off from owning football clubs if they are found to be unsuitable. The Bill also includes new backstop powers around financial distributions between the Premier League and the English Football League (EFL). These powers mean that if the leagues fail to agree on a new deal on financial distributions, then the backstop can be triggered to ensure a settlement is reached.

The full DCMS press statement covering all aspects of the Bill can be found here

Rick Parry said: ''The EFL welcomes today’s arrival of the Football Governance Bill to Parliament in what we hope will be an important milestone to help us secure the long-term financial sustainability of England’s football pyramid.

If delivered on the right terms, this landmark legislation can help fix the game’s broken financial model by offering the independent input ultimately needed to help ensure that all Clubs can survive and thrive in a fair and competitive environment.

The establishment of the Independent Football Regulator will be at the heart of this reform, and we are encouraged that the Regulator will be given backstop powers to deliver financial redistributions should the game be unable to agree a deal itself.

In recent years, we have been working with Government and across Parliament on a cross-party basis. It is clear there is an appreciation of just how important professional Clubs are to their communities and why they must be protected.

We are pleased that the Government has stated its commitment to the State of the Game Review which will provide the basis for the Independent Regulator’s work in making the game financially sustainable.

The League looks forward to contributing to that Review while simultaneously working with EFL Clubs,Parliamentarians, and officials to ensure that the Football Governance Bill is fit for purpose and can deliver the best regulatory regime to safeguard our game for generations.

Finally, on behalf of the EFL I would like to thank MPs, Peers, fans and all those who have helped get the Bill to Parliament and we will continue to work collaboratively in the months ahead.”


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