Statement from Rick Parry, EFL Chair - Government response to the fan-led review.
Since the publication of the Fan-Led Review in November, the EFL has engaged regularly with Government officials and ministers on the important topics it has raised. Our focus throughout has been on how we can make clubs financially sustainable at all levels of the football pyramid for future generations of football fans. We are therefore pleased that the Government has recognised the overriding importance of this issue in its response earlier today.
During our discussions, we have also made it clear that the EFL would support the introduction of an independent statutory-backed regulator, if it provided the means by which we can deliver a reset of the game’s finances. This will require a combination of better financial regulation and a fairer redistribution of money across the pyramid, and it is again encouraging that the Government has called for more money to be transferred from the top of the game down through the divisions.
The Government’s response asks that that we continue to engage with the Premier League and FA to identify a football solution to this issue and we will do so. However, it should be recognised that the EFL has been seeking to progress this issue for the last two years, calling for a 75/25 split of revenues with the Premier League, without achieving any tangible progress. Therefore, we also welcome the fact that the Government is open to granting the regulator a ‘backstop’ power to implement redistribution across the pyramid, if football is unable to agree a solution itself.
As the Government heads towards publishing its white paper in the summer, the League will continue discussions around all aspects of the response, including on fan engagement, EDI and player welfare where significant work is already ongoing across the game.
Our shared priority remains to safeguard our football pyramid in the interests of football supporters and clubs throughout the country and we look forward to working with the Government to ensure that the reforms required are achieved as quickly as possible.