BusinessBusiness RecoveryFootball few spoil it for many

Football few spoil it for many

When Jimmy Hill led a successful campaign against the maximum wage for footballers 41 years ago, he could hardly have foreseen the levels of wealth that would be earned by elite players.

Nor could he have predicted that these highest of earners, would one day be in a position to bring down whole teams and turn the financial rescue efforts for stricken clubs on their heads.

But the financial expectations of a handful of players now effectively call the shots when it comes to the economics of the national game.

As rules stand, clubs in administration are obliged to pay off so-called super creditors – players, managers and other clubs – before they make payments even to banks. With the collapse of ITV Digital, over its failure to pay sponsorship in the order of #180m, it has become clear these rules need to be scrapped if clubs are to survive.

Surely, as broadcasting struggles to find a financial model that will square this particular circle, wage expectations need to be revised. Or we are left with a fine example of the few spoiling it for the many – as John Motson might say.

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