Legal experts’ opinions on the Fan Led Review of Football Governance
There has been much discussion and debate following the publication of the 'Fan-Led Review of Football Governance: securing the game’s future'(Review), led by Tracey Crouch MP, which was commissioned to explore ways of improving the governance, ownership and financial sustainability of clubs in English football. LawInSport has asked a number of leading lawyers working in the sports sector to share their views on the findings and recommendations of the Review, and what they think the practical implications of it will be for both English football and the wider world of football.
The contributors to this article include leading solicitors, barristers, and arbitrators who are experts of the area of law in sport, and have extensive experience representing leagues, clubs, players, agents and national and international federations both in and outside of football. We would like to thank all of them for sharing their personal views on the Review.
- Nick De Marco QC – Barrister, Blackstone Chambers
- Mark Hovell – Head of Sport, Mills & Reeve & CAS Arbitrator
- Liz Coley – Partner, Level Law
- Michael Savva (Partner) & Stuart Bolton (Associate) – Watson, Farley & Williams
- Rupert Beloff – Barrister, 4-5 Gray’s Inn Square Chambers
- Kevin Carpenter – Principal, Captivate Legal & Sports Solutions
- Lydia Banerjee – Barrister, Littleton Chambers
- Alistair McHenry – Director, Walker Morris
- Hannah Kent – Associate, Onside Law
- Craig Hogg – Associate, Peters & Peters
- Neeraj Thomas - Partner, CMS
For background the Review was commissioned to build on the strengths of the football pyramid following a number of high profile incidents affecting the domestic game including the financial collapse of Bury FC, , the destabilising impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, and the attempt to set up a breakaway competition with the European Super League (ESL). The findings and recommendations of the Review (for a helpful overview of which, please see here) include a number of key points, including the installation of an independent football regulator (IREF), and the introduction of a transfer tax on teams to provide greater support throughout the football pyramid.
Nick De Marco QC – Barrister, Blackstone Chambers
The Review is, in my view, the most comprehensive, intelligent and focussed report into sports governance for many years – putting to shame many QC led more rambling and diffuse efforts.
The most important recommendation, and the one it appears will be backed by government legislation, is to set up the IREF. The Review correctly identifies the problems of regulation now, especially the conflicts of interests that occur where bodies like the Premier League act both as private corporations made up of competing clubs marketing their product (which they do well) at the same time as regulating their competition.
The Review is right to recommend IREF has powers over things like financial regulation and the owners and directors test, where the need for independent regulation is greatest, but not over the organisation of the competition and commercial activity.
The devil will, of course, be in the detail. How will IREF be appointed and how will its decisions be challenged? If it is, as suggested, a statutory body, will it be subject to judicial review and the scrutiny of the courts? There is much to consider.
The proposals about the important but thorny subject of financial regulation in football are some of the most thoughtful, refreshing, and practical to be made for many years – far more realistic than the unwieldy and failing rules the EFL has spent years trying to enforce
Other key recommendations such as a better approach to corporate governance, improving equality, diversity and inclusion, giving supporters consultative roles in key decisions and the fairer distribution of revenues are all important and welcome proposals to that should be seriously considered.
Without agreeing to every detail or proposal, and with more thought needed on implementation, sports lawyers and football fans alike ought to pay tribute to Tracey Crouch and her entire team for such an impressive and thorough piece of work which could be just the medicine needed for the future success and continued growth of our national game.
Mark Hovell – Head of Sport, Mills & Reeve & CAS Arbitrator
Overall, it’s difficult not to support the recommendations of the Fan-Led Review of Football Governance, however, we have already seen some push back from the Premier League and the EFL, the latter with the announcement of its Independent Financial Unit.
Of particular interest to me were the recommendations regarding the PL Parachute Payments and Divisional Pay. Ensuring all clubs have the appropriate levels of capital and liquidity can only be commended, but it is very difficult for many clubs to manage relegation from the Premier League. Those that plan for it, perhaps don’t invest in players whilst in the Premier League, but those that do spend on players can come unstuck if they get relegated. They typically look to sell those players they can, but can often be left with players, on Premier League wages, that they cannot transfer or loan (without having to cover a large portion of their wages and effectively paying them to play for another club). The Parachute Payment is designed to soften that financial blow. Conversely, those that haven’t overly invested in the Premier League and then go down with the Parachute monies can often be in a good position to go straight back up after a season in the Championship, making it difficult for the other clubs there to compete. Different clubs have different approaches to promotion and relegation. Some do hold onto the broadcasting monies and others spend them. It will be interesting to see if the Leagues can find a way to protect clubs coming down, whilst preserving the competition in the Championship.
A recommendation is to have divisional pay. The reality is this exists already. Not just at the bottom of the Premier League, but at the top too, where clubs that might/ might not get into Europe, have different levels of pay should they qualify for those remunerative competitions or miss out. However, the Review appears to be recommending a change to the standard contract for players, so there is an automatic percentage between the various Leagues, as opposed to a club and player personal negotiation in each individual contract. This seems difficult, as all clubs are different to each other, as are players. Some clubs may need a bigger percentage reduction, due to the way they are run; also some players can push back against any divisional pay, as there is competition to sign them. What would the percentage reductions be between the various leagues, who would calculate these and should it be the PFA that consider and negotiate this from the perspective of the players, as opposed to agents, as currently?
Liz Coley – Partner, Level Law
As Jonathan Taylor QC stated in his review to the EFL Board in 2020 into the demise of Bury, “the real cause of Bury FC’s collapse is the fact that Clubs are able to fund player wages not just from normal operating income but by means of cash injections from their owners. This can make Clubs completely reliant on owner funding to remain competitive on the pitch. If such an owner becomes no longer ready, willing and/or able (for whatever reason) to provide such funding, the Club is inevitably plunged into deep financial crisis.”
Only 5 months after Mr Taylor’s review, the EFL were faced with Wigan Athletic’s completely unforeseen entry into administration, only a matter of weeks after a change of ownership. The EFL’s League Arbitration Panel found that “the Insolvency Event arose because [ ] the effective owner, made a commercial decision to choose to go back on promises of continued support and stopped putting money into the Club.”
The Review makes many admirable suggestions in respect of curtailing the “out of control costs at every level of the game”, however would any of their suggestions prevent scenarios like those sadly seen at Bury and Wigan Athletic after a withdrawal of promised owner funding? How many other clubs could find themselves in similarly precarious situations if such an event was to occur in relation to them?
Recommendation 39 of the Review (to help reduce playing costs) is the inclusion of mandatory salary increases on promotion and decreases on relegation within the standard player contract, to avoid negotiation of the relegation clause out of the contact as part of a competitive recruitment strategy. If implemented, it should reduce the need for parachute payments (designed to help alleviate the financial impact of relegation) which currently equate to 52% of funding provided by the Premier League to the football pyramid. These funds would instead be able to be distributed more evenly and assist in creating greater stability at lower levels of the pyramid.
However, such an amendment to the standard playing contract could only take place after agreement within the Professional Football Negotiating and Consultative Committee (the PFNCC) as their terms of reference require them to consider matters relating to the standard terms and conditions for players’ contracts and state that no major changes in the regulations of the leagues affecting players’ terms and conditions of employment shall take place without full discussion and agreement. The PFNCC is made up of representatives of the PFA, FA, Premier League and EFL.
Currently, clause 8 of Schedule 2 of the standard playing contract only requires the basic wage of the player to be stated; there is no requirement in the contract itself to detail any increase or decrease dependent on league status. Premier League rules require the full details of a player’s remuneration including all benefits to which he is entitled to be set out in the contract and EFL regulations similarly state that full details of all payments to the player or benefits paid in cash or in kind must be included in the contract and, in the event that the contract covers more than one season, it must specify the rate of basic wage to be paid relative to the divisional status of the club.
While the Review’s recommendation sounds reasonable and the salary increase / decrease mechanism is one that is already used by many clubs, it should be noted that the recommendation relates to a player’s basic wage only and not bonuses and other provisions in the contract which could easily be made subject to increases and decreases dependent on league status. Some clubs are known to keep a player’s basic wage within a certain bracket for negotiating purposes and then top this up with significant bonuses, so they can say that “we don’t pay over “X” per week”. In addition, would it be fair to impose a reduction on youth team players on a fairly basic level of income who do not contribute to a club’s success or otherwise at first team level? Furthermore, some club executives receive higher levels of remuneration than certain players at their club; should they also be included? Perhaps a reduction should only take effect for employees receiving over a certain level of salary?
As the Review rightly states, player salary costs are the biggest source of expenditure for football clubs and it should be considered whether amendments need to be made to football’s regulations across the leagues, regardless of whether the other recommendations of the Review are progressed, to try to limit the risks arising from over-reliance on owner funding.
Michael Savva (Partner) & Stuart Bolton (Associate) – Watson, Farley & Williams
We offer our view on the Review, specifically in relation to finance in football, and therefore focussing on Chapter 9 (Finances and Distributions in Football). The precarious cash flow position of Championship clubs, in particular, is urgent. A new approach is required. It is welcome that the Tracey Report recognises this. We offer our view in relation to the key income and expenditure issues addressed in Chapter 9, being wages and distributions (through parachute payments) respectively.
Wages/Wages to Turnover (9.25 to 9.27)
The Review recognises the danger of club wage-to-turnover ratios in excess of 1:1. Chart 3 at 3.6 (reproduced below) demonstrates the dire situation in the Championship – in 2019/2020, only 5 clubs had a wages-to-turnover ratio of less than 1:1, and 4 were greater than 1.8:1. Recommendation 39 aims to address this, with a compulsory automatic adjustment to player salaries for clubs who are promoted to/relegated from the EPL. Some may see this as a good recommendation; others a very controversial one. No specific figure is suggested in the Review, however this would theoretically need to be a significant percentage to reflect both the need for clubs to significantly reduce their wages-to-turnover ratios following relegation (and vice versa following promotion), given the substantial impact on turnover that promotion to/relegation from the EPL ensues. As the Review states, the figure and implementation of the recommendation would need to be regulated and would clearly face significant push back from EPL players and agents in particular. However, given the perilous state of affairs many clubs find themselves in, many will argue there is the need for this strong centralised action, if football is to avoid the scenario where Championship clubs are regularly on the brink of collapse. In our view, this will be extremely difficult to put in place and to regulate.
Parachute payments (9.12 to 9.17)
An undercurrent of the Review is the need to overhaul how distributions flow through the English game. The most stark example of need for reform is Parachute Payments, which account for 52% of distributions made by the EPL to EFL clubs. Therefore over half of the EPL’s distributions are made to a maximum of 9 EFL clubs, and often even less (EFL clubs in receipt of parachute payments are often promoted, which extinguishes the right to further Parachute Payments). Recommendations 37 and 38 essentially propose to wipe clean the slate on FA and EPL distributions, albeit without specifically recommending that parachute payments should be abolished. These recommendations come at a time when it is reported that the EPL and EPLD are in talks to consider alternatives to the existing Parachute Payment model, which has been criticised as exacerbating the financial disparity between Championship clubs. These recommendations are to be welcomed, but lack particularity due to the ongoing negotiations into distribution reform between the FA, EPL and EFL. Aside from the evidence in the Review to show how Parachute Payments can serve to encourage aggressive spending, fundamentally, the distributions can be put to better and more equitable use in other ways. For example, the EPL will pay £647m in Parachute Payments between 2019 and 2022, much of which is likely to be swallowed-up to soften the blow of bloated player contracts at relegated clubs; at the other end of the spectrum, Bury FC were liquidated due to debts of just £5m. Further, if Recommendation 39 is implemented in a meaningful way, the need for parachute payments will be significantly diluted.
Rupert Beloff – Barrister, 4-5 Gray’s Inn Square Chambers
The single largest proposed change in the Review is the creation of an independent regulator for football. The fact that one has been proposed for an individual sport is a testament to the financial value of the game, a widespread perception that the biggest clubs have disproportionate power and the unique place that the game occupies in the public consciousness.
The idea of an independent regulator will inevitably continue to provoke strong opposition from the Premier League and its clubs who are likely to prefer non-statutory regulation within the existing football structures. Nevertheless, it appears that there is a will within government to make time in the short to medium term to create the necessary statutory framework. How effective such a regulator would be in achieving the review’s stated aims, for example the fairer redistribution of money within the game, will depend upon the powers given to it by legislation.
The Review’s proposed ‘golden share’ for fans to allow them to veto the sales of stadia, relocation and alteration of colours do not go as far as advocates of community ownership of clubs would want and, equally, may be unpalatable to clubs interested in maximising their financial opportunities but would go some way to correcting the perceived imbalance between fans’ wishes and owners’ power.
The Review has some obvious omissions. For example, it says little directly about foreign-state ownership of football clubs, a topic that was put under the spotlight in the recent takeover saga of Newcastle United. It is also sketchy on details of costs control and funding, although it rejects ideas such as salary caps, largely leaving them the putative independent regulator.
Overall, the review’s recommendations offer the prospect of real change in the governance of football and a move away from the current, somewhat fractured, system of self-regulation.
Kevin Carpenter – Principal, Captivate Legal & Sports Solutions
The Review is a remarkable piece of work to produce in just over half a year, especially given the degree of stakeholder consultation, with much praise to be given to the team who worked on it.
The key principle underpinning the recommended reforms is that they are focused upon specialist business regulation adapted to the football industry. What the Review team has deliberately avoided is starting with the premise that football is different as an industry and therefore it needs to be treated differently than other commercial sectors. The leaders of the Review were cognisant from the outset of taking expert advice from those agencies and individuals who are specialists in the regulation of UK business: including financial conduct, competition, digital and business crime. In taking this approach, there is a lesser chance that organisations higher up the football governance pyramid, namely UEFA and FIFA, would be justified in intervening on the basis of autonomy.
As someone who has worked in the field of sports governance for over a decade, the recommendations set out in the Review come across as detailed, targeted and, above all, proportionate. Proportionality has to be viewed in the context of tens of years of autonomous regulation which has singularly failed to prevent largesse and financial mismanagement of clubs or achieve any notion of sustainability up-and-down the pyramid. My speaking in favour of the recommendations is particularly informed by my role as volunteer legal advisor for an organisation called Fair Game, who published its Manifesto of solutions for English football in September, and gave evidence to the Review team. Gladly the vast majority of what Fair Game called for has been covered by the Review’s recommendations.
Given my expertise in sport integrity, I was encouraged to see the Review team recommend the introduction of an ‘integrity test’ for owners and directors. Although new to English football, it is one of those measures that highlights the Review team drawing on existing and effective regulatory practice from the corporate world, compliance with which should not be problematic for those individuals with nothing to hide.
There are different approaches discussed in Chapters 7 and 8 of the Review in respect of supporter engagement and the role fans should play in the running of clubs. At Sheffield Wednesday (a club I support), there is what the Review would characterise as “structured dialogue” between the overseas owner and the fans. However, the owner has repeatedly ignored the explicit advice of the fans’ group, so that option is pretty toothless in my opinion. I am also not convinced of the merits of having fan-elected directors on the board of a club. With only one vote they do not in reality wield any actual power, and there is always more strength in numbers. This is why I favour the concepts proposed by the Review of the shadow board and “golden share” combined, backed-up by support from the new independent regulator in terms of specific licence conditions in this area.
The practical implications of the Review for English football clubs are that there will be a slightly increased regulatory and compliance burden (at least initially), but they have to accept this is long overdue in that football at the professional levels in England is now inherently driven by commercial factors, and the cost of failure is too great for key stakeholders (particularly supporters) to continue with the existing flawed regulatory structure. Compliance does not have to be viewed as a negative, rather it should be accepted as vital for the long-term sustainability of professional football across the leagues. A consequence of this will hopefully be increased competitiveness on the pitch as well, as more teams will be on a secure financial footing to have sustained on-field progress, which will mean greater uncertainty of competitive outcome. After all, uncertainty is what sport is fundamentally about, differentiating itself from other forms of entertainment, and drives interest in football from those turning up at the stadiums, tuning in remotely or investing commercially.
There will inevitably be initial reluctance and pains in working with the new IREF but as the practice of obtaining a business licence from IREF becomes familiar, compliance can be used as a positive to enhance trust with key stakeholders. Indeed, much of the compliance work done by clubs is already required by existing Premier League or English Football League regulation, but when implemented by IREF, a specialist body, the efficiency of the process should be significantly enhanced.
Lydia Banerjee – Barrister, Littleton Chambers
One of the most interesting things about the Review from my perspective is the brief consideration of women’s football which comes at Chapter 10. It is striking how the challenges of valuing and growing the women’s game has been brought to the fore by the pandemic and the funding issues which arose as revenues were put under pressure.
I would be interested to see whether any review, if it takes place, looks at the US model, a draft system or any other blue sky thinking. Growing the game does not need to mean replicating the premier league warts and all. It is an opportunity which shouldn’t be missed.
The call for both parity and a review specifically looking at growing the women’s game is made loud and clear. The question for me is whether, without the threat of a European Super League, there will ever be the political and public will to undertake the task.
Alistair McHenry – Director, Walker Morris
The Review has 10 headline recommendations, broken down into 47 more detailed recommendations. Some of those 10 are uncontroversial and cannot sensibly be argued with; e.g. "football needs to improve equality, diversity and inclusion in clubs" or "additional protection for key items of club heritage" are recommendations everyone can get on board with. Similarly, recommendations such as better protection for the welfare of players exiting the game, or the women's game having its own review, appear to offer obvious opportunities to improve the game as a whole.
The debacle of the aborted ESL in April 2021 appears to have been the driving factor behind the recommendation for having what the Review calls "Shadow Boards" for supporters. This was where the owners of some of the most powerful clubs across Europe had to urgently backtrack and were roundly criticised for pressing ahead with plans the majority of their supporters would have opposed (had they been consulted). Even the smallest amount of fan engagement on that topic would have prevented all the embarrassment, expense and fall out the aborted ESL caused. So that has to be a welcome recommendation in principle, though it remains to be seen how supporter boards will work in practice. How different the proposed ESL was, as compared with UEFA's new Champions League format, would make for an interesting first debate for those supporter boards.
The most contentious recommendation and the one which has generated the most headlines is for an independent regulator. Under its proposed remit are the recommendations for the regulator to oversee financial regulation, implement a new owners' and directors' test, and introduce a solidarity transfer levy for Premier League clubs. There are independent regulators for most other industries, so from a practical perspective and in the interests of transparency and accountability, an independent regulator appears on the face of it to be a sensible suggestion. But how does that sit with all the various existing governing bodies in football? The Premier League, EFL and FA etc. are all quasi-regulators in their own right, with their own sets of rules, investigatory and enforcement powers. Will football really stand to benefit from intervention from the Government where that intervention will be (for most), not welcomed by its clubs, owners and other stakeholders? The momentum behind the recommendation appears to make it inevitable in some form, so there should not be too long to wait to find out.
Improved financial regulation, however, has to be welcomed across the board (whoever is responsible for implementing and enforcing it). There is an urgent need for better, more effective financial controls which oblige clubs to live within their means and spend only in accordance with their legitimate revenue / profit. This would help avoid any further financial catastrophes from clubs entering insolvency procedures, as well as making for a more level playing field and rewarding those clubs which are more responsibly run (rather than simply bankrolled). Financial Fair Play (FFP) hasn't really worked as a leveller, and has been made even more toothless following the COVID-19 pandemic. Something has to improve on and replace FFP, as ultimately no one wants the same clubs winning every year in a closed shop, akin to the European Super League everyone was so against.
Hannah Kent – Associate, Onside Law
The publication of the Review has prompted much discussion in the media and amongst supporters, clubs and governing bodies. Arguably the most controversial of the recommendations put forward by the Review was that of the IREF, aimed to combat issues of financial mismanagement, weak ownership of clubs and a mistrust of regulation of the game. Whilst independent regulators can function well and be a “force for good” as claimed in the Review, the IREF is unlikely to be the silver bullet that many are hoping for. The remit of the IREF (as seen in the diagram below) would be huge and, consequently, the funding and resourcing of it would need to be on a similar scale.
The thorny issue of the cost of the IREF was not dealt with in the Review, and real questions will need to be asked about who is funding the IREF and how. Issues of perception will also still arise, for example, those clubs which contribute the most financially to the IREF could be perceived as having greater influence, thereby eroding public trust and confident in the independence of the regulator. Given the responses of clubs and existing regulators, it appears unlikely that the IREF will go ahead in the form proposed by the Review.
Fans are now, more than ever, attuned to the regulation of football and sporting integrity (which is partly the reason for the Review having taken place), however what is key is the proper enforcement of football’s rules and regulations (whether existing or future). It is worth remembering that the existence of an IREF would unlikely have prevented the most recent events which appear to have caused the most consternation amongst fans, such as the European Super League debacle or the Saudi takeover of Newcastle United (given the Review does not explain what a so-called integrity test would actually involve). What appears more likely moving forward is a compromise wherein an independent regulator is set up, with a more limited remit, primarily to ensure proper enforcement of the relevant rules and regulations, whether that be financial regulations or the Owners and Directors test. Such a move would be palatable to all stakeholders, provided it has sufficient powers of sanction and is done properly – this is crucial.
Separately, it is pleasing that the Review has concluded that the women’s game should have its own, dedicated review. The issues faced in the women’s game are unique to it and it is an important step in itself that the Review recognises that it should be treated separately to the men’s game.
Craig Hogg – Associate, Peters & Peters
The recommendations made in the fan-led review of football governance should be broadly welcomed, and mark an important step in shifting the governance of English football clubs away from a tentatively-regulated industry towards a system where robust and ongoing corporate governance is the expected norm, and the financial conduct of owners, directors and agents is more closely monitored. This is important given the particular vulnerabilities inherent to the sector, notably, the often complex web of stakeholders involved, the fact that football clubs often vary in their legal composition, and the immense value of the market as a whole.
Within the recommendations made, the regulatory onus would appear to be placed squarely on the shoulders of the new proposed IREF. Only time will tell whether the more expansive controls proposed for new prospective owners and directors, in particular the introduction of additional compliance reviews for owners every three years, are effective at diverting dirty money away from the sport given the fragmented nature and fast pace of investment into the sector. On a practical level, the proposals placed on clubs to declare ultimate beneficial owners to the IREF as a licensing condition, and undertake enhanced due diligence checks on owners’ source of funds, for example, provide important de minimis (pertaining to minimal things)safeguards, and would not appear unduly burdensome for clubs to undertake themselves.
Whilst the report contains important provisions recommending new owners be required to submit a business plan for assessment by IREF, and financial track record and ‘integrity’ both form requirements within the new proposed owners’ and directors’ tests, a more ambitious approach to explicitly transforming culture within the sector would have been welcomed. In this regard, the authors should take heed of the financial services sector, and the emphasis on ‘healthy’ and ‘purposeful’ cultures explored by the Financial Conduct Authority through the Senior Managers and Certification Regime, and propose scrutiny of new owners’ and directors’ non-financial misconduct, such as serious personal misbehaviour, bullying, discrimination and sexual misconduct in the workplace. The introduction of effective whistleblower mechanisms supported through the IREF, to encompass both financial and non-financial misconduct, should also be encouraged as an important additional check on the practices of owners and directors, agents and associated counterparties.
Neeraj Thomas - Partner, CMS
The Government has chosen to ‘endorse’ the recommendation of the IREF in principle stating that “football requires a strong, independent regulator to secure the future of our national game”.
Should the Government adopt the recommendations of the Panel, it is likely to have significant far reaching practical impact on clubs throughout the English football pyramid. Some of these changes are likely to be far more controversial than others. It is unlikely that many clubs will resist the recommendations aimed at increasing fan transparency and preventing breakaway leagues given the significant support for such measures within their fan bases. As noted above, some clubs are already starting to take steps towards developing better fan engagement strategies including appointing fan bords. However, the significant changes to how clubs manage their finances, including potentially impacting on the ability of wealthy owners to invest directly in their squads and increasing the cost of transfers, will likely continue to meet with firm resistance for clubs.
However, and unsurprisingly, the recommendations involving money (either transfer levies or independent financial regulations) are likely to be opposed. English football has long considered that its regulation is best handled by existing regulatory bodies and any imposition of entirely independent regulation is unlikely to be accepted. Indeed, there are various questions as to how the IREF would interact and interplay with international governing bodies such as UEFA or FIFA. Whilst the Review states that any rules brought in by the IREF would require to be compatible with UEFA and FIFA rules, UEFA and FIFA exercise jurisdiction over English football due to the fact that the English FA is a UEFA and FIFA member. The authors are not aware of any other football nation which has introduced an independent regulator and it would be very interesting to see how the IREF would work in practice against the overall regulatory framework of international football.
Should the Government put the full weight of its authority behind the Panel’s recommendations, legal challenges from the clubs and/or existing regulatory bodies may well follow. The exact form of these legal challenges will likely depend on which recommendations are actually implemented but challenges to the Government’s jurisdiction to make these changes (standing the UEFA/FIFA regulatory framework), Judicial Reviews and/or competition law challenges may well feature highly.
For those interested in more further background and analysis see:
- An overview of the recommendation by Neeraj Thomas is helpful for those wishing to know more,
- LawInSport’s Football Law Conference,
- LawInSport’s session on The European Super League and It’s Legal Fallout,
- The Price of Football Podcast which contains an interview with Tracey Crouch MP,
- The Athletic’s podcast with Tracey Crouch MP prior to the release of the Review and after the Review’s recommendations were released.
- Crouch Report England European Super League Fan Led Review of Football Governance Fan Ownership Football Governance Premier League Regulation