Sport

English Premier League clubs debate radical reform plan

English Premier League clubs debate radical reform plan”

The so-called "Project Big Picture" has been labelled a "power grab" by the Premier League's biggest and wealthiest clubs, taking advantage of the dire financial position of the English Football League (EFL) - which comprises the three divisions directly beneath the top flight - amid the coronavirus crisis.

According to the report, the plans are said to contain "no active links to current football clubs", Bernstein believing "the sport can not be trusted to reform itself" and requires 'an independent body to mediate on the different needs of the FA, Premier League, Football League, National League and Women's Game'.

"It also seeks to narrow the huge financial gaps that now exist between the Premier League and Championship and also between the Championship and League One, which will greatly assist relegated clubs across all divisions rather than the current threat of financial instability that can occur in the current structure".

"All 20 Premier League clubs today unanimously agreed that Project Big Picture will not be endorsed or pursued by the Premier League, or The FA", the league said in a statement.

The statement continued: "Further, Premier League shareholders agree to work together as a 20-club collective on a strategic plan for the future structures and financing of English football, consulting with all stakeholders to ensure a vibrant, competitive and sustainable football pyramid".

He said the plan, championed by EFL chairman Rick Parry, was "a distraction at best", adding: "I hope the EFL will stop being distracted by this latest wheeze".

Representatives of the Premier League clubs will have the chance to debate the issue in the open for the first time during a virtual get-together today.

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The process will include the FA, the United Kingdom government and the EFL, added the statement.

The Premier League said its rescue package will consist of interest-free loans and grants.

Despite the positives for Football League sides, the plans have been met by widespread opposition elsewhere, given the plans to remove the one-club, one-vote system in the Premier League and hand unprecedented power to the elite sides, with the nine longest-serving clubs possessing the power to make major changes should they receive a vote of just six.

But the 20 clubs swiftly rejected the proposals and instead agreed to a widespread strategy review and also gave the green light to a new bailout offer to the EFL after their opening attempt was rejected. "This addresses Government concerns about lower league clubs' financial fragility". There would be controversial changes to voting rights and a substantial financial settlement for the struggling English Football League (EFL).

Each season di bottom two teams for Premier League go automatically chop relegation.

Despite the huge attention focused on the proposals, which were leaked on Sunday, neither of the two American owners, Liverpool's John W Henry or Manchester United's Joel Glazer, took part in the online meeting, leaving their executives to represent them.

"Project Big Picture" was doing the rounds as one of the most ambitious projects by the Liverpool and Manchester United authorities.



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