EFL rejects Premier League’s £50m rescue package for League One and Two clubs

EFL rejects Premier League’s £50m rescue package for League One and Two clubs

Fulham won the Championship play-off final in August

English Football League clubs have rejected the Premier League’s proposed £50m rescue package for League One and Two clubs, saying it “falls some way short” of the required amount.

On Wednesday, the Premier League said talks about how to help the Championship are ongoing.

The EFL said any settlement “must meet the requirements of all 72 clubs”.

It added: “The EFL is keen to continue discussions with the Premier League to reach an agreeable solution that will address the short-term financial needs of all of our clubs, and allow us the ability to consider the longer-term economic issues in parallel that specifically look to achieve a more sustainable EFL for the future.”

Championship club Preston’s advisor Peter Ridsdale says some clubs in the league could fold by Christmas unless they get funding, with a ban on crowds leading to significant losses.

Earlier on Thursday, a group led by ex-Football Association chairman David Bernstein called for an independent regulator to solve English football’s crisis, while Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta said clubs have an obligation to protect the lower leagues and grassroots football.

Under Project Big Picture, the EFL would have received 25% of all future TV deals, which would have been negotiated jointly, plus a £250m bailout.

The Premier League said on Wednesday that the financial package for League One and League Two clubs was intended to make sure they “will not go out of business as a result of the financial impact of Covid-19 and be able to complete the 2020-21 season”.

It conceded they were at more risk than Premier League and Championship clubs as they “rely more heavily on matchday revenue and have fewer resources at their disposal”.

Analysis

BBC sports editor Dan Roan

Amid an unprecedented financial crisis and the divisive fallout of the now-abandoned Project Big Picture proposals, relations between the footballing authorities seem to be worse than ever.

Some EFL clubs are furious with what was described to me as a “derisory” offer by the Premier League and the strings some fear are attached to the bailout.

With talk that a host of clubs could go into administration and fresh calls for government intervention, the Premier League has responded – sources are insisting there were no conditions to their offer, except clubs having to prove they will soon go out of business as a result of Covid-19 to get a grant or an interest-free loan.

Despite being rejected, the Premier League’s offer remains on the table and sources indicate it will engage with any EFL club that believes it is under immediate threat.

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