Premier League clubs told to quit “pleading poverty” and pay 10 per cent levy on transfers

Tracey Crouch's fan-led review has been commended
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“Some of the reticence in the past has been that Premier League money has gone to bad owners in the EFL or badly run businesses but if the right structural items are in place then it gives the clubs confidence that money will be going to the right place.”

Crouch also proposed new, stricter ownership tests for potential takeovers which includes an “integrity” test to stop bad owners as well as also regular financial checks to stop clubs going bust.

But she admitted she “did not know” whether that would have stopped the Saudi-led takeover at Newcastle which has upset other Premier League clubs and also raised questions because of the country’s record on human rights.

Crouch added: “Would the integrity test have stopped the Newcastle takeover? The answer is that I don’t know because I don’t know all of the details of the Newcastle takeover but I do think it would have stressed the bid further in terms of character and relationship.

“But I also think there would have been greater transparency in the takeover. One of the criticisms in the takeover bid is that no-one knew what was going on. Actually, having that proper integrity test would have removed some of that.

“It’s essential to have clarity. One of the key issues of an independent regulator is that it removes all of that vested interest, gives greater transparency and there’s accountability, no ability to influence and it brings some clarity and comfort to everyone involved.”

Grassroots football needs more support
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Fans’ groups have welcomed the report which recommends a new independent regulator. The Premier League does already pay a four per cent levy which goes to player development, another five per cent to FIFA and going to nearly 20 per cent could leave clubs struggling to compete.

The Premier League added: “We have an outstanding track record on and off the pitch, including the positive impact on youth development, communities and the wider game, of which we are proud. It is important to everyone that any reforms do not damage our game, its competitive balance or the levels of current investment.”