EFL Rescue Package Talks Create Questions

EFL Rescue Package Talks Create Questions
With ‘Project Big Picture’ causing all manner of ructions within the English football community, the case for unity has been made by a number of parties and it is that notion of unity which has caused an issue for the EFL. In the initial proposals that were set out in the controversial proposal, the EFL clubs were set to receive a one-off payment of £250m and in return, this lifeline would see parachute payments from the Premier League subsequently scrapped.

A financial sweetener which in the current climate was almost too good to be true and as long as other key stakeholders also saw the big picture that was being presented, those 72 EFL outfits would soon breathe a collective sigh of relief.

However, with the Premier League and The F.A. downplaying any hopes of seismic change happening anytime soon, the question regarding finances lower down the English league chain still needs to be answer.

An answer that was nearly found when the Premier League offered a £50m bailout package, although it did come with a few strings attached, 24 of them to be exact. 24, because that is the number of teams that ply their trade in the second tier Championship.

The £50m that was set to be passed on from Premier League to the EFL, was to circumnavigate the Championship and instead go to only clubs that compete within the confines of League One and League Two.

An offer that was steeped in some level of protectionism, because not only do those within the Premier League not want to assist what at the moment are indirect rivals and of course, it only needs one promotion to change that, but also they feel they should not have to.

If assistance was afforded to those within the Championship as well, it could be an offer that comes back to bite those who are in the lower reaches of the Premier League, as their houses may be swapped just 12 months later.

Then again the more pertinent issue, is perhaps the overall state of finances within the Championship, as the race to reach the promised land is one that is almighty expensive and the widely believed notion is, that this is a division that needs to get its house in order.

However, this house cannot be reordered without a financial inducement from elsewhere and this the figurative rock and a hard place that those relative have-nots now find themselves trying to get out of.

Of course, it would have been extremely easy for the EFL to take the offer of £50m and at least save those at the lower end of the food chain. However, they have taken the stance of all for one and one for all.

Which means as things stand, there is no immediate recourse to funding and although talks linger on regarding the governance of the game, it seems to be a case of all words and not a great deal of action.

Then again, if radical change is to be afoot, it is something that is going to take time to not only discuss but also carry out and if there is one other thing that the EFL do not possess apart from money, it is time.

The Premier League have stated that no club will go to the wall in this current climate, which does offer a modicum of hope for those who need it most. Then again, how do you feed 72 football clubs with such a voracious appetite for money, that ultimately will be at least a £64m question.

 

Written by Dan Tracey

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