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EFL shun Premier League's £50m bailout offer after warning 10 clubs could go bust by Christmas


EFL reject Premier League’s £50m bailout proposal with sides warned as many as 10 clubs could go bust before Christmas as Championship demands they are included in rescue package

  • The bailout offer promised grants and loans for League One and Two clubs   
  • But after a series of divisional calls on Thursday the EFL have rejected plans
  • Clubs in the Championship believe the bailout should also see them included
  • Northampton and Burton Albion were among the most vocal League One clubs 

The EFL have rejected the Premier League’s offer of a £50m bailout, with clubs warned as many as 10 could go out of business before Christmas.

A series of divisional calls were made on Thursday, with the consensus that the offer – which only promises grants and interest-free loans for those in Leagues One and Two – should be rejected.

The view among those in the Championship – with whom talks are ongoing – was that any bailout has to be for the whole of the EFL and not just the two divisions below them.

The EFL have rejected the Premier League's proposal to help with a £50million bailout

The EFL have rejected the Premier League’s proposal to help with a £50million bailout

The Premier League's proposal only promises grants and loans for League One and Two sides

The Premier League’s proposal only promises grants and loans for League One and Two sides

‘A plan for the EFL has to be for the whole of the EFL and that was reflected on the call,’ an official at one second tier club explained.

‘I think there was a realisation that the £250m that Rick Parry had spoken about was unrealistic, but the view was that there was no merit in taking the first offer – it would only weaken the position not only with the Premier League but also with the government.’ 

As revealed by Sportsmail, conversations will be had over assistance for Championship clubs, but only those who can show that the pandemic – rather than overspending – is behind their financial troubles.

The EFL said on Thursday that they are keen to continue discussions with the Premier League to reach an agreeable solution.

Championship clubs believe they should be included as well as League One and Two sides

Championship clubs believe they should be included as well as League One and Two sides

A statement read: ‘The need for continued unity across the membership base was fundamental to discussions across all three divisions, and therefore there was a strong consensus that any rescue package must meet the requirements of all 72 Clubs before it can be considered in full. 

‘The League has been very clear in its discussions of the financial requirements needed to address lost gate receipts in 2019/20 and 2020/21, and while EFL Clubs are appreciative that a formal proposal has now been put forward, the conditional offer of £50million falls some way short of this.’ 

On the League One call, representatives from Gillingham, Northampton and Burton Albion were among the most vocal.

One source said the £250m spoken about by EFL chairman Rick Parry (above) was unrealistic

One source said the £250m spoken about by EFL chairman Rick Parry (above) was unrealistic

There was hostility towards the Premier League over the offer, which many do not feel goes far enough. 

‘The view is that it (the offer) is a mickey take,’ said one Chief Executive. 

‘The point was made that it was originally promised as far back as March that there’d be a package. And yet here we are, seven months on.’ 

The Premier League were not the only ones to come under fire. ‘The point was made that the government has given £1.5bn to the arts and yet what has it given to professional football, the national sport?’ the source added.

‘Nothing. Jez Moxey (Burton chief executive) made the point that we need to come up with a constructive approach to try and get the government to the table’. 

Northampton, who play at Sixfields Stadium, were among the most vocal League One sides

Northampton, who play at Sixfields Stadium, were among the most vocal League One sides

EFL STATEMENT IN FULL 

EFL Clubs have today met by division to discuss the conditional offer put forward yesterday by the Premier League in respect to the financial support required as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The need for continued unity across the membership base was fundamental to discussions across all three divisions, and therefore there was a strong consensus that any rescue package must meet the requirements of all 72 Clubs before it can be considered in full.

The League has been very clear in its discussions of the financial requirements needed to address lost gate receipts in 2019/20 and 2020/21, and while EFL Clubs are appreciative that a formal proposal has now been put forward, the conditional offer of £50million falls some way short of this.

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.

A source from another Championship club described the meeting as ‘very long and very repetitive’. 

They said that the clubs were unanimous in their belief that the Premier League offer should be rejected and added that Parry was told to tell the Premier League in no uncertain terms that they needed to find a solution for 72 clubs and not 48.

The chairman left the meeting after an hour, with it still in progress. Some clubs are known to have said that they wanted it making clear to the government that they would continue to sell hospitality. News of London going into Tier 2 measures broke during the conference, with Millwall adamant that they would carry on regardless.

There was also a suggestion that Championship clubs should also tell government that they would refuse to pay HMRC debts, but that option was met with some dissenting voices.

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