Town Vote Against Academy Proposals
Friday, 21st Oct 2011 16:20
Town were amongst 22 Football League clubs to vote against Premier League proposals for an overhaul of the academy system which were passed at a meeting at the Bescot Stadium in Walsall yesterday. The controversial plans mean changes to the current compensation tribunal system and will exempt Premier League sides from the rules stopping them from signing players younger than 16 from more than an hour-and-a-half away and those under 12 living beyond an hour’s travelling time.
Forty-six clubs voted in favour of the proposals with 22 – including Town – voting against, while three failed to appear at the meeting and there was one abstention.
The acceptance of the proposals was seen as no surprise with the Premier League currently withholding part of their solidarity youth development funding, which is worth £5.4 million per season to Football League clubs.
The Elite Player Performance Plan (EPPP), which will see a new four-tier academy system introduced from 2012/13 with clubs receiving increased funding over a four-year period, will most controversially see the current transfer tribunal system replaced, with Football League clubs now likely to receive much lower compensation.
Under the new scheme, the selling club will paid £3,000 for each year of a player's development between nine and 11 with the annual figure for their time at a club from 12 to 16 ranging from £12,500 to £40,000.
The EPPP will see four categories of academy with Premier League sides likely to be in category one and Town in category two.
Peterborough director of football Barry Fry, speaking prior to the vote, said he was concerned by the developments: "What frightens me is that a lot of clubs will pull out of having a youth system altogether.
“Lower league clubs will look at how much it costs to run their academy or school of excellence and think that, if the Premier League can nick their best players for a low price, what is the point of investing in it?
"The Premier League wants everything and they want it for nothing. Football League clubs will moan about this at the meeting but vote for it because they have no choice."
After the meeting, which was attended by Town chief executive Simon Clegg, a Football League statement read: "Following lengthy consideration, Football League clubs have voted to accept the Premier League's proposals on the EPPP.
"The League will now continue discussions with the Premier League on the implementation of the EPPP across professional football."
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