PFA Blast Salary Cap Ahead of Friday Vote
Thursday, 6th Aug 2020 19:58
The Professional Footballers Association (PFA) has issued a statement slamming the salary cap, on which League One clubs are set to vote on Friday, claiming it is “being rushed through, without proper consideration or consultation”.
The statement reads: “Ahead of the EFL vote tomorrow, the PFA has sent a report to all club chief executives and the EFL regarding the proposed salary caps for League One and Two.
“The report has raised concerns that the proposed cap is being rushed through, without proper consideration or consultation.
“Like everyone involved in football, we want to see sustainable clubs at all levels. We absolutely understand and appreciate the huge economic pressure that clubs have come under due to the Covid-19 crisis.
“However, we have significant reservations about the measures being proposed and the speed at which these are being implemented.
“The introduction of a salary cap in English football represents a seismic change. It is a change that will have far-reaching and significant impacts right across the professional game. We must take the time to ensure that these are properly considered and understood.
“We have been surprised and disappointed at the level of consultation and engagement around these proposals so far.
“It is, undoubtedly, in the best interests of the clubs, the leagues and the players that we work together on this important issue.
“Today, we have invited the EFL to a period of expedited arbitration in August, before the next season starts and the transfer window closes, in order to reach a shared agreement on the way forward.
“The EFL has a legal obligation to consult with the PFA and the Professional Football Negotiating and Consultative Committee (PFNCC), over any potential changes to a player’s conditions.
“This consultation has not happened, and as such, we are gravely concerned that any cap brought in will be unlawful and unenforceable, which will ultimately be detrimental to everyone involved.”
Town are among the clubs to have spoken out against the proposal. The Blues would be among the League One clubs most hit by the cap, which the EFL proposes being set at £2.5 million.
In their last season in the Championship Town's overall wage bill was £18.95 million with player wages understood to have made up around £11-£12 million of that figure.
After relegation, many players’ salaries dropped as a result of clauses in their deals, by as much as 60 per cent in some cases, however, the player wage bill is almost certainly still more than double, perhaps three times higher than the proposed limit and will be one of the largest in the division.
It’s understood the wages of players aged under 21 wouldn’t count towards the £2.5 million figure, which is believed to include basic wages, bonuses, image rights and other elements of contracts. Squad sizes would ultimately be limited to 20 senior players aged over 21 after a period of transition with eight of those homegrown.
However, player contracts signed prior to the cap being implemented would only count as a £1,300-a-week wage in the season ahead rather than at their true level.
Fines or points deductions would be issued for clubs breaking the cap and it’s proposed that for every £1 a club strays over the limit they would be fined £3 with potential transgressions judged by an independent disciplinary commission.
The proposal, which will be a simple yes/no question, needs two-thirds of the clubs in the division, 16, to vote in favour for it to be instigated. Last week, Portsmouth chief executive Mark Catlin said he was aware of “an ever-growing number of clubs which may vote against it” but still felt it might be passed.
The vote seems likely to be close with the Blues, Portsmouth, Sunderland, Hull City, Charlton, Wigan, Doncaster and Oxford believed to be against the proposal meaning it would only take one more for it to be defeated. Not all clubs have indicated how they will vote.
Town’s general manager of football operations Lee O’Neill has said he is no fan of the cap which hampers owner Marcus Evans’s ability to inject cash into the Blues.
“I understand why it’s on the table and why clubs are looking at it and it brings to light the financial implications around football at the moment and trying to level the playing field from a financial aspect,” he told TWTD.
“From an ownership point of view, if you have that luxury of having an owner that is willing to or able to invest more money into the club because he wants to, this obviously reduces the ability to be able to do that and that I don’t think is fair.
“I think Financial Fair Play was put in place to look at those elements, to help the clubs who are big clubs with big fanbases, and that can economically work for most clubs if it’s adhered to. We’ve stuck to that, we’ve definitely adhered to the Financial Fair Play stuff.
“The salary cap has got to be voted through and it’s something that is being talked about. I’m not necessarily a big fan of it for obvious reasons.”
League Two’s proposed limit is £1.25 million, while it’s reported that £18 million will be the Championship cap.
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