The UK government have confirmed an independent regulator will soon be introduced to protect the future of English football.
Calls for a regulator have been growing in strength over the past few years as a result of various issues, such as a number of clubs falling into administration and the controversy of the initial plan to form a Super League.
Now, a plan has been formally announced to ‘oversee the financial sustainability of the game and put fans back at the heart of how football is run’.
A statement read:
“The regulator will implement a new licensing system from the top flight down to the National League, requiring clubs to demonstrate sound financial business models and good corporate governance as part of an application process before being allowed to compete.
“It will guarantee fans a greater say in the strategic running of their clubs and help protect clubs’ heritage to stop owners changing names, badges and home shirt colours without consulting fans. It will require clubs to seek regulator approval for any sale or relocation of the stadium, with fan engagement a major part of that process.”
As well as giving fans more control over their clubs, this independent regular will also oversee the strengthening of the owners’ and directors’ test in an attempt to ensure clubs do not fall into the hands of unsuitable owners.
Crucially, the regulator will also have the power to block English sides from joining unpopular breakaway competitions like the Super League.
Prime Minister RIshi Sunak said:
“Since its inception over 165 years ago, English football has been bringing people together, providing a source of pride for communities and inspiration to millions of fans across the country.
“Yet despite the success of the sport both at home and abroad, we know that there are real challenges which threaten the stability of clubs both big and small.
“These bold new plans will put fans back at the heart of football, protect the rich heritage and traditions of our much-loved clubs and safeguard the beautiful game for future generations.”