After two-and-a-half years of uncertainty and anguish, two failed managerial tenures, as many close calls with relegation and a staggering 10-point deduction handed down by the Premier League, Evertonians finally felt as though they knew where they stood in November.

Get behind the club, Sean Dyche and the players; cheer, cajole and support the team to Premier League safety, regardless of what Everton’s appeal against a historic and wholly disproportionate sanction might throw up; then pause to take stock this summer. Thanks to that run of results between early October and mid-December, and the potential for the manager to collect enough points over the remaining 17 games of the campaign, it seemed as though that was a plausible scenario.

Then came the news yesterday that Everton had been referred to an independent commission for a second time, charged with further breaches of the Premier League’s Profitability and Sustainability rules (PSR) and at risk of further censure by way of another points deduction. If you’re asking yourself, “What’s the point anymore?” you’re not alone.

Likewise it may seem to you as though the Premier League have been making up the rules as they go along. Despite the ruling by October’s “Independent” Commission, there is still no official, published framework by which clubs can be punished for breaching PSR, although we assume that Nottingham Forest, also referred yesterday, and Everton will be subject to the same protocol as the one by which the Toffees were docked 6 points for transgressing and then 1 point for every £5m by which they went over the permitted £105m threshold.

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And, despite telling rival clubs in March last year that it would be impossible to come to a decision on Everton’s case in time for the ruling to take effect in the same season due to the complexity of the case, now the whole process — appeals and all – can be wrapped up by the end of May. Yes, the 2023-24 season could end and we still won’t know who has been relegated for another week!

In any case, the League have tacitly admitted that the existing spending rules, which could, depending on the outcome of Everton’s appeal against November’s points deduction, send the club down, will be scrapped in August in favour of a new framework based more around wages-to-turnover ratio than outright spending totals. (Frustratingly, according to a source at the club, Everton believe they would comfortably be compliant under those new rules.)

All of that pales, however, against “double jeopardy” and the absurd notion that Everton could be punished for the same crime twice in the same season for the actions of people long gone from the club and an owner with one foot out the door and because the League's own process wasn't completed by the end of the previous campaign. Meanwhile, the case against Manchester City and their alleged 115 charges continues to get kicked down the road and, all the while, they continue to accumulate tens to hundreds of millions of pounds in Premier League merit payments and Champions League revenue. One rule for the elite…

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

It’s utterly depressing but, as a sporting endeavour, the Premier League has become a farce. Undermined by sub-standard match officials and weekly controversy around Video Assistant Referees, it ceased to be a true competition many years ago. Its inception in 1992, driven — and the bitter irony isn’t lost here — by Everton, their former chairman, Sir Philip Carter, and the rest of the old “big five”, ushered in a new age of increasingly rampant capitalism and reckless spending, one that has culminated in the transfer of ownership of some of the country’s most treasured community institutions to Russian oligarchs, Far Eastern billionaires and Middle Eastern sovereign wealth funds.

Inequality and a lack of fairness are now baked into English football at the top level and the Premier League is so popular and so rich that the fact that it lost its integrity long ago doesn’t seem to matter. Not enough people can bring themselves to turn away. To a far smaller degree, that lack of fairness has always existed but, within many Everton fans’ lifetimes, clubs like Manchester United and Liverpool could go down; such was a cyclical nature of the game that no longer exists.

These days, clubs like Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal enjoy huge intrinsic benefits from simply being based in London; Manchester United and Liverpool enjoy the imperviousness that comes from enormous legacy support, a global following — with all the commercial benefits that brings — founded on success decades ago. The kind of dynastic success denied Everton by the indiscriminate ban on English clubs from competing in Europe following the tragedy at Heysel.

Introduced in 2014 (and voted in by the member clubs at the time, including Everton it shouldn't be forgotten), PSR, under the guise of protecting clubs from spending beyond their means, simply had the effect of cementing the status quo as it was, with Manchester City and Abu Dhabi United Group nipping under the wire to form the “big six” alongside United, Arsenal, Chelsea, Spurs and Liverpool. To mix metaphors, it allowed the cartel to begin the process of pulling the ladder up behind them before attempting the ultimate fait accompli with the European Super League before a revolt by fans reined them in. Their penalty for a gross act of rebellion and treachery? A measly £3.67m “donation” of contrition from each.

Their huge commercial revenues and power to attract multi-billionaire potential buyers mean that there is never truly any risk to their sustainability as a going concern. (For the same reason, Man Utd are permitted to carry £1bn in debt with none of the repercussions Everton are facing.) They can also keep buying the best players as success begets success begets prize money and more commercial revenue. And their ability to attract players is what enabled Chelsea to bend the rules to breaking point with a £750m net spend over the past five years whilst Everton’s was a mere £28.5m.

Of course, net spend is only one part of the equation. As Stefan Szymanski and Simon Kuper argued in the book Soccernomics, there is a quantitative relationship between wages paid by Premier League teams and where they end up finishing in the table over time. The Premier League has become an arena where, if you want to truly compete – to break that glass ceiling to join the so-called Big Six – you have to gamble, you have to speculate, you have to take risks and you have to be willing to pay players top dollar to play for you if you don’t have a long-term outlook like the likes of Brighton.

As Evertonian and author Jim Keoghan tweeted, echoing the frustrated cries of many of his Blue brethren, “You can't consistently spend like the elite until you grow revenue. The best way to grow revenue is to enjoy on-field success. But you can't do that without consistently spending like the elite. But of course, you can’t consistently spend like the elite until you grow revenue…"

There is no doubt that Farhad Moshiri tried to spend Everton’s way into the Champions League between 2016 and 2020, culminating in the massive outlay on the likes of James Rodriguez, Allan, Abdoulaye Doucouré and Carlo Ancelotti and their associated salaries, in the expectation that revenue would take off as a result. Had it worked, we wouldn't be in this position.

That gamble demonstrably failed, though, and he and his since-departed Board have left the club and its supporters to deal with the fall-out. But Everton did try to grow their revenue and, just like Man City did with their ties to Abu Dhabi and Newcastle are doing with their links to Saudi Arabia, used Moshiri’s relationship with USM Holdings to leverage commercial deals.

But when Russia invaded Ukraine, a forthcoming naming-rights deal for the new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock, worth an estimated £200m over 20 years, had to be scrapped and existing sponsorships with USM companies were immediately suspended. That hamstrung the club in terms of further commercial deals as they have been unable to arrange sponsorships in the same asset class — the club can’t take on a new sponsor for Finch Farm, for example, because the deal with USM is merely suspended but unlikely to ever be revived.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

The upshot of it all is that, by most measures, Everton have, under Moshiri, practically become what the Premier League’s half-baked and fluid spending rules were designed to prevent — unsustainable. The hierarchy admitted in the last accounts that relegation would represent a serious challenge to the Blues’ future as a going concern and the club is currently limping by from month to month on loans from a prospective buyer that may yet be rejected by the League itself as unsuitable owners.

Yet, with Everton having acknowledged how close to the wind they had sailed during the first four years of Moshiri’s association with the club and undertaken to work in tandem with the Premier League on a concerted plan to reduce their transfer expenditure and wages-to-turnover ratio; and with the consensus being that the existing PSR rules are fundamentally flawed, surely the prudent thing would have been for the League to give the club some latitude as it worked through that process. Certainly it would, having already whacked them with the biggest sporting sanction in English top-flight history.

Instead, the League’s rules around spending over a rolling three-year interval have Everton trapped and almost locked into multiple punishments for the same crime even though they have already been sanctioned for 75% of the accounting period that will be in question for the second independent commission. (This is in marked contrast to the EFL which, sensibly, caps losses after the first year.)

Perversely, the Premier League's actions are driving Everton towards an unsustainable situation that could, potentially, result in the club going under completely and, with the chief bone of contention hinging on the consideration of interest payments on loans to fund the one thing that could make the club sustainable and self-sufficient once again — the new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock — it all just feels vindictive at this point.

Sadly, in another damning indictment of the modern game, the Toffees’ immediate future looks as though it will be decided not on the pitch but in the courtroom; the club’s most important signing not a player with silky skills but a “super silk” KC who can hopefully hone in on double jeopardy, autrefois convict, and the flawed nature of an entire process that stands to wreck one of English football’s grandest institutions beyond the damage already inflicted by its owner.

Even if Laurence Rabinowitz and his team succeed, it will still feel like Everton are standing at the bottom of Mount Everest, with all the uncertainty over the club’s future ownership and the tilted playing field of the Premier League… but at least they’ll be alive to fight another day.

Note: Some of the comments below regarding Richard Masters at the House of Commons Select Comitttee on Football Governance have been moved to this thread

Reader Comments (138)

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David Vaughan
1 Posted 16/01/2024 at 00:10:35
Superb summary, calm, level-headed and on point.

Are we at breaking point? I fear we are, this time. But I don't think we'll be going down quietly, or alone. And that might just be enough to give us that 'fight another day' chance.

"Smile," the man said, "it could be worse." So I dragged up a smile... and, lo, it got worse.

Steve Oshaugh
2 Posted 16/01/2024 at 00:42:52
It feels different this time... I'm not sure how to watch the rest of the season.

Ultimately, we won't know for sure (unless we somehow manage to get plus 15 points on 18th place, I guess) whether we stay up or not. That will make it truly hard to watch.

The really annoying bit is that, for all the profligacy and awful financial management, we have not won anything or even really had any good times at all... it's been thoroughly shit.

At least Man City, Chelsea and Leeds (the last time they rolled the dice) had some good times. We rolled the dice and we're still shit.

Dupont Koo
3 Posted 16/01/2024 at 00:59:19
Thank you, Lyndon, for keeping a calm head amidst hurricanes.

No matter what, nothing will stop me from enjoying this team's many positives (Jarrad's growth as a player on a weekly basis! McNeil giving it all on the field despite his family hardship... Tarkowski and Coleman re-establishing our tough-as-nails identity!) and the warts (Doucouré can never thread a proper 5 yard pass to teammates! Calvert-Lewin can't even score a goal for his life... Dyche forgot that he can make substitutes!).

Jack Convery
4 Posted 16/01/2024 at 02:32:33
What really depresses me is the certainty that a fire sale is coming and the carpet-bagging Sly 6and their European ilk, will give us a take-it-or-leave-it bid for Branthwaite, Onana, and Pickford. Lesser lights may come in for the likes of McNeil, Garner, Mykolenko, Calvert-Lewin and Tarkowski.

Moshiri and the old Board have truly screwed us and the Premier League is salivating as it pours petrol on our great club.

Lyndon, your piece is bang on the money. The hypocrisy, the corruption, the bias and the truly horrendous sight of inaction towards Man City and Chelsea. The light-of-touch handling of the Sly 6 plan to destroy the Premier League by joining a Euroopean Super League with no relegation threat, because they are terrified of these clubs.

It has come out, that Blair's Labour government appeared to know about the Post Office computer system, Horizon, and its faults but to go after Fujitsu would have scuppered other trade arrangements with the Japanese.

It makes you wonder how much influence the Arabs are having in keeping Man City out of the mire and how much influence the Saudis may have had in the new PSR rules being brought in for next season. After all, British Aerospace needs those Saudi cheques.

The Beautiful Game has gone… it really has.

Ernie Baywood
5 Posted 16/01/2024 at 02:51:14
Having read through the commission's findings, I'd be surprised if they went for a double jeopardy type punishment this time around. It's not going to be 10 points per charge... for plenty of very good reasons, not least that they'll also need to relegate their darlings.

We've only been charged right now. And we expected that charge. Nothing has changed.

Focus needs to continue to be on the appeal. Demonstrate that interest has now been treated in relation to the stadium (it wasn't previously). Demonstrate that the punishment is over the top given it will convince clubs to go into administration rather than pay their bills. Demonstrate flaws in the rules and the process.

The next charge shouldn't be as significant as the last one. Unless we've deliberately been up to no good again.

Paul Ferry
6 Posted 16/01/2024 at 03:36:25
A calm, measured, and perceptive understanding of where we are now, Lyndon. Thank you.

Steve (Oshaugh), you know already that if this ends up as a second points deduction (my feeling is that it will be a fine for reasons I mentioned on the other thread) that it will be 16 points if goal difference is on our side?

I just looked at the table and we are one point ahead of the relegation zone. If we end up with another cut in points, let's say for the sake of it 6 points, then we would need 5 points to stay up as things stand at this moment.

Kieran Kinsella
7 Posted 16/01/2024 at 05:01:41

Very sensible well-reasoned article. Unfortunately it feels like the Premier League lack all of the above.

I wasn't able to watch the Villa game and planned to watch the highlights today but, after this news, I found myself thinking “What's the point?” I say that as someone who wakes up every morning and checks ToffeeWeb then Google's Everton news.

I remember training for the school team 35 years ago and loving that the coach let us all wear Everton shirts. So my worry is that, if some kind of nutter Everton addict like me is feeling like it's a stitch-up, so what's the point?

Then what will the players be feeling? Dyche somehow inspired them to up the ante after the last farcical investigation. But if you're Belgian-born Onana reading headlines you're destined for Arsenal, or Branthwaite reading Real Madrid want you, or Pickford worrying about the Euros, are you thinking about the seemingly sinking ship at this point or your exit strategy, avoiding injury and your next pay day? Who can blame them they have limited careers and they're not blues born and bred like “our” Ross or Wayne.

Beyond that, the whole concept, structure and inequality makes me feel like "Why am I wasting my time on this?” It feels like competing with female steroid-infused East German shot putters with umpires from North Korea.

If as is a realistic possibility Everton go under, I can honestly say, after a life based around football, at this point, I'd gladly wipe the dust off my sandals and find a new more honest sport to follow.

Just makes me sick to my stomach — and the same day this occurs, Man City and their 115 violations see their coach get a FIFA award.

Brent Stephens
8 Posted 16/01/2024 at 05:30:00
Superb summary of events, chronology, contradictions, and a broken judicial system.

VAR on steroids is what this whole PSR debacle feels like.

With the VAR on the pitch, we wait for minutes in order for a distant, unknown mind (the VAR) to connect to its own on-pitch body (the referee) in order to arrive at a decision. A connection that is sometimes as uncoordinated as the drunk staggering out of the pub at closing time.

But with the VAR, at least we get the decision within minutes. And once the decision has been made, once the drunk has dragged himself up from the gutter and the whistle blown to restart play, the referee doesn't blow his whistle to ask the VAR to have another look at the same incident in the context of a game now moved on somewhat in time.

But with the PSR process as it plays out in real time, we wait months, not minutes, for that fateful decision. A decision-making process where we can't see those dreaded lines being drawn in real time, by a faceless mind (that distant, faceless Commission – men again!), far away in sense and sensibility.

A faceless mind which at times gives the impression (just the impression) of not exactly seeing eye-to-eye with the man on the pitch (the Premier League), where the man on the pitch is trying to steer the faceless mind towards a decision rather than the other way round.

And where, after months of waiting for a decision, having started the game again, the man on the pitch asks that distant, faceless mind to have another look and possibly ("hopefully!") award a second penalty for the same foul.

The man on the pitch doesn't want just a penalty, just the opportunity for a red card to send a man off, but the opportunity to send the whole team off, for good.

And all this isn't even hidden away from view, last on Match of the Day.

Danny O’Neill
9 Posted 16/01/2024 at 06:43:12
Great calm and balanced summary.

I recently used the phrase 'vindictive vendetta bordering on corruption'. Well, as a long-time critic of how Sky and the Premier League changed our game (our game – not theirs) in many wrong ways, they have now stepped over the line of departure in terms of blatantly picking on easy targets.

We had to suspend USM sponsorship yet Chelsea are permitted to have a Russia-linked sleeve sponsor. Double standards. Who governs the Premier League? Who holds them to account? Why is there no framework for processes like this?

That leads to, as Lyndon alludes to, making the rules up as they go along. Are they audited by a genuinely external body? They seem self-regulating. Marking their own homework.

Are they looking at the bigger picture and the measures we have taken to address the situation? Surely we should be given credit for that?

In my experience, in any walk of life, why should any business or organisation not be allowed to speculate to accumulate? If you blow it, you blow it. If it comes off, you win and succeed.

At least the club seem to have a bit more fight in them this time around. Maybe we were guilty of being too submissive and compliant first time around?

Too many questions. Ernie makes the point: at the moment, we are only charged. We can challenge this.

Ian Wilkins
10 Posted 16/01/2024 at 08:32:51
Excellent summary, Lyndon, an impassioned and balanced representation of the situation.

Unfortunately, many of the facts (net spend per team over last 5 windows for example; self-financed new stadium; mitigating factors etc) are not reaching the wider public audience.

Most football fans simply hear we have broken the rules (twice), therefore probably deserve some punishment, and yes the failure to address Man City is inequitable.

For many, this is simply ‘Everton noise' having been caught. We urgently need our case, including the facts, to be heard. (Come in, Mr Bates!)

We must find a way of getting articulate composed Everton voices heard in the national arena. Difficult, I know, given Sky sympathies, but other channels and forums are more balanced.

The Everton case must reach the widest possible audience and gain greater support through greater understanding.

Christine Foster
11 Posted 16/01/2024 at 08:36:50
Life has taught me you cannot be nice when dealing with vindictive bastards who just happen to have their own agenda.

I would look at any way we could sue the Premier League. Go after them. They have contrived a process to threaten our very existence, with malice. What in God's name have we to lose?

They have trashed our name and brand globally. No manager or player of any quality will look at us for a long time to come. We need to fight back. Our reputation has been trashed.

I am not concerned with staying in the Premier League any more, I want to bring them down.

Paul Hewitt
12 Posted 16/01/2024 at 08:51:49
Great post, Christine.

I'd happily go to the Championship and see the Big 5 go to a Super League if it meant them bastards at the Premier League end up with nothing.

Danny O’Neill
13 Posted 16/01/2024 at 08:54:39
Exactly, Christine.

Apologies for going a bit dramatic, but there was a saying when I was in the military.

The British Army never retreats. It conducts a fighting withdrawal, regroups and goes back again.

We are fighting. We have to.

Mal van Schaick
14 Posted 16/01/2024 at 09:02:58
The proper place for Everton's defence of the ‘double jeopardy' points deduction and charges has to be in court, and not arguing with incompetent, intransigent bastards, who are cherry-picking their targets, who are riding rough-shod over our club.

Akin to playground bullies.

Ian Pilkington
15 Posted 16/01/2024 at 09:13:53
Thank you, Lyndon, for a brilliant summarisation of this appalling debacle.

I checked back to February 2013 when the clubs voted on the proposal to introduce profit and sustainability rules.

Six clubs voted against it: Manchester City, Villa, Fulham, Southampton, Swansea and West Ham; Reading abstained. The motion in favour was therefore carried by a two-thirds majority.

It is surprising that Man City voted against it as, 5 years after the Abu Dhabi takeover, they would of course clearly benefit from P&S with the other five of the Sky Six.

The most obvious loser would be Everton so why on earth did the club vote in favour?! Just one more vote against the motion would have stopped its introduction.

Kenwright's malignant legacy lives on and will continue to do so for years to come.

Stu Darlington
16 Posted 16/01/2024 at 09:24:03
Thanks for your calm and considered summary of all the twists and turns, contradictions, anomalies and blatant injustice and incompetence from a bunch of cowards hiding behind their own ridiculous rule book and tilted playing field.
But as you say, we are still alive to fight another day, and we will!

Christine's emotional call for the club to fight back is very appealing, but I doubt the Everton Board will go down that route. Too many pitfalls, legal fees etc should they lose, but it's maybe something fans could get involved with?

Crowd fund to raise some money, sue them for the things Christine mentions at first, defamation of our name and brand, trashing our name, loss of income, and I'm sure there are many other cases we could bring.

Tie them up in court cases for years, make them answer questions in the public domain and be criticised openly for their lack of transparency and basic fairness. That's what people like this hate most, being made to justify their unjustifiable behaviour in public.

Brent Stephens
17 Posted 16/01/2024 at 09:49:31
Danny #9, yes, there is an argument for the Premier League just letting a club go bust if it was run badly.

The Premier League would just need to erase the results for matches played by that team up to that point, a simple process, and from there the league would just carry on as normal until it took one more team from the Championship at the end of the season.

Instead of the actions the Premier League has taken – which might end up with the club going bust, anyway. Oh, the irony.

Dave Cashen
18 Posted 16/01/2024 at 09:52:33
Superb article, Lyndon.

I decided to turn my back on all these issues. I simply couldn't get my head around the injustice and it was eating away at me, but having read your article following the second referral – plus the many superb responses, I realise that isn't an option. We have an obligation to protect our treasured match days and our beloved club.

If you want to be part of this club, you have to fight this with everything you've got. I think the saying goes: "Evil flourishes when good men do nothing."

Brian Harrison
19 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:03:20
I think while it's ridiculous to include the years that you have already received a 10-point reduction for but, unfortunately, the Premier League's poor system for breaking P&S rules are based on a 3-year rolling amount.

Also,only Everton and Nottingham Forest have broken the P&S rules;all other clubs have stayed within the confines of the rules.

Having said that, I am sure in our defence of both the original and subsequent appeals, we will point out that while every club understood there would be a punishment for breaking the rules, there wasn't and still isn't a laid down formula as to what the punishments are for transgressing the rules.

Also, there aren't any rules as to what happens if you are punished for a transgression, but then the years you have been punished for are still included in the latest set of accounts, that again show in a 3-year period we have transgressed the allowed £105m losses.

We are also told that they intend to change the rules again in August, just after both ourselves and Forest will have found out what if any punishment we will receive.

I have long been persuaded by Gary Neville's argument that clubs should be allowed to spend what they want, but all owners of clubs have to sign a legally binding bond that they can't leave a club in a worse financial state than when they took over the club.

This takes away the worry of an owner coming in spending fortunes and loading the debts onto the club; under the system Neville suggests that won't happen.

As far as the Premier League with their P&S rules, or Uefa with their FFP rules trying to make out this was to make it a level playing field for all clubs is a nonsense; this was to protect the cartel of the elite.

Man Utd are a billion pounds in debt yet no sanctions; Chelsea in a similar predicament, yet no sanctions. Both Real Madrid and Barcelona in similar situations yet no sanctions… so where is the elusive level playing field?

Finally, Chelsea have admitted to the Premier League that under Abramovich he spent his own money on players that weren't put through the books of Chelsea's accounts yet no commission date date set for that hearing.

Danny O’Neill
20 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:16:40
We have to fight it Dave.

In the heat of the moment, I was contemplating pouring blue paint on the doorsteps of their Paddington offices!!

But, despite having been cautioned and being occasionally on the wrong side of the law as a youngster, I remembered I am 52 years old and having risen through the ranks in the Army from humble beginnings, I am a retired Major. Call it a safety check.

I would have got arrested and then I would have been in serious trouble at home.

But you are on the money. We have to fight for what is so dear to us.

As the saying goes. The pen is mightier than the sword. Stay calm and out manoeuvre these grey suits.

Fight Everton. On the pitch and off it in the hearings.

Dave Abrahams
21 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:21:59
Thanks, Lyndon, for your well-put article on where we stand and how we were put there. Thanks also to other posts for their interesting thoughts on the topic.

Let's see how our new signing performs in his blue silk, much better than our previous defenders did, hopefully, and the fight goes on.

Will Mabon
22 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:30:09
An excellent piece.

We all know what's going on. We don't know exactly why. It's all hidden behind the wall of procedure; a procedure that conveniently has as its arbiter, a vague and amorphous, actually nonexistent tariff of punishment, decided upon by an endlessly malleable "independent" system of judgement.

This is no attempt to protect, to correct, educate or otherwise steer the game (or league) to a place of stability and fairness. It's no attempt to deter government interjection; this is an attack.

Forest, be as they may in a valid state of breach of the rules, are a convenient deflector with this timing of announcement. It's a disgrace.

Christine Foster
23 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:31:41
The only, single, dammed thing I am so annoyed about is that I called this, several times over recent months.

But even I didn't think they would have the front to actually follow up the 10-pointer with a charge that included the majority of the time period already punished for. I missed that one as I didn't think that even they would be so bad as to even attempt it. But no, I was wrong.

That was bad enough, but to set a second charge enforcement in the same season? Are you kidding?

But most insidious of it all, the decision will come after the season has finished, leaving us the fans in limbo and at the same time ensuring no fans protest are seen at any matches. Wow.

Then the kicker. The rules will be changed 3 months later before the new season starts. Will it be applied retrospectively to Man City or Chelsea? If so, why not us?

Wipe the slate clean before it's too late.

See you in court.

Christopher Timmins
24 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:33:11
Ian #19,

I was always told to never speak ill of the dead; however, one recently departed individual is pushing me to the limit.

The worst-run club in the country.

The sooner that Lyndon has the thread for the Cup tie up and running, the better.

Sam Hoare
25 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:37:43
The sad truth is that we need the Premier League more than they need us. The only way to gain any leverage over them would be to form some sort of coalition with the other clubs (likely outside the Top 6) who seem to be the ones most negatively affected by this PSR farce.

But, having said that, we cannot reasonably expect the likes of Luton, Burnley and Sheffield United to start campaigning for us to get our points back!!

Whilst I, like others, see a lot to criticise in the Premier League's governance, the majority of my vitriol stays directed at the baffling incompetence displayed by Moshiri and Everton's leadership who have made such a stupendously poor succession of decisions. It really is hard to try and discern a bright future – even for the most ardent of Toffee optimists.

I think it's possible that this second breach gets thrown out or that we get given a fine rather, or suspended points deduction. I also think it's possible that we get a 5- or 6-point deduction and still manage to win or draw enough games to survive.

But, even if we do that, then we still have to survive the billion pounds of debt that we now seem to have which comes with crippling interest payments?!

And to think that Moshiri is a trained economist and certified accountant!!

Thank goodness for Sean Dyche who brings a calmness and solid predictability on the pitch that I hope will continue to bring us points. Because off the pitch it's a ludicrous caricature of a circus (though, to be fair, I think Thelwell is doing a decent job).

Phil Greenough
26 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:48:39
Here is Henry Winter's opinion of the Premier League farce.

It was surprising to see the chief executive of the Premier League, Richard Masters, at a match at the weekend because he certainly does not appear in tune with the game. His organisation's tone-deaf statement about financial breaches by Everton and Nottingham Forest read like it had been written by lawyers for lawyers rather than understanding that these serious allegations have very human consequences.

A complicated story can basically be split into three narratives: the Premier League's heartless treatment of fans of those clubs affected; the legitimacy of some of the Premier League's case; and the mitigating reasons for some of the excesses of Everton and Forest.

Even if you agree with the importance of profit and sustainability rules (PSR) — as I do as long as it is applied consistently among all clubs, whatever their size, however powerful their lawyers — you have to show some understanding of what the charges mean on a human level, to supporters and staff of the two clubs.

Masters and his organisation have forgotten that football's more than a business. It's an obsession, underpinning the phenomenal success of the competition, and fans worry deeply about their club. One strand of Everton's defence will be the adverse effect on the mental health of their followers.

It may appear mere pedantry to dispute the tone of the wording, which was sparse and arrogant, but the cold legalese actually confirms why the Premier League has lost the argument over the importance of PSR, and why so many fans are so contemptuous of an organisation that treats them contemptuously. The Premier League certainly is not “corrupt”, as Gwladys Street claims, but it is clueless and heartless at times.

And naive. Because Masters actually has a legitimate point to make, he just lacks the people skills or leadership qualities to make it convincingly, as his predecessor, Richard Scudamore, would have done. Because Everton and Forest have cases to answer. Other clubs who abided by the rules quietly point out they faced opponents who fielded players they could not afford under the rules. Forest have bought or loaned 130 players in the seven years since Evangelos Marinakis bought the club.

Balancing the books matters. Financial Fair Play was designed to prevent a club sliding into administration by over-spending. It's there to encourage an organic approach, keeping outlay in proportionate line with revenue. As Mr Micawber, that Dickensian devotee of FFP, advised David Copperfield: “Annual income £20, annual expenditure £19, 19 shillings and sixpence, result happiness. Annual income £20, annual expenditure £20 and sixpence, result misery”.

Premier League chief executive Masters has forgotten that football is more than a business — it's an obsession.
The hypocrisy of the Premier League lies within its room. It allowed Farhad Moshiri at Everton and Marinakis to join the party, and didn't question their spending more rigorously and consistently. More players, more stars in sport's greatest soap opera, more plot lines, more interest from home and abroad and, bingo, more broadcast revenue.

That is why the new regulator will be so important in tracking their spending, almost applying PSR in real time. The Premier League insists it is coincidence that the statement arrived on the eve of Masters giving evidence to the DCMS Select Committee into football governance. Yet the Premier League's failure to come up — so far — with a proper “new deal” for EFL clubs is another stain on the organisation that has just scooped a £6.7 billion rights bonanza.

And so to the clubs' mitigating reasons. First, consistency. The Premier League's defence is that the 115 charges against Manchester City for alleged financial breaches are so complicated they cannot be dealt with in the time frame afforded to Everton and Forest. Those clubs co-operated with the Premier League, while City have challenged and challenged, robustly protesting their innocence.

Yet even if City are absolved of all blame, as Pep Guardiola and the club insist, the delay alone is damaging. It is impossible to celebrate fully City's remarkable achievements until they are cleared. An asterisk lurks. The charges against City are historical, unlike Everton's and Forest's, but still affect the league.

Second, neither Everton nor Forest put the very existence of the Premier League in danger as Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, City, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur did with their brief Super League plotting, for which they were eventually fined. Everton believe they have already been punished for 75 per cent of the period covered by the new referral. Double jeopardy, they call it. The Super Leaguers put the whole English pyramid in jeopardy.

Everton's anger is rooted partly in their belief that they are effectively being punished for building Bramley-Moore Dock, their magnificent new stadium.

Third, timing. Everton believe they could have got £20 million more for Richarlison from Spurs had they not been placed under pressure to generate funds quickly. Forest believe they would have met PSR had they sold Brennan Johnson earlier last summer, but held on to maximise an offer from Tottenham Hotspur on deadline day. If so, the Premier League needs to make rules go from deadline day to deadline day over the three years.

Fourth, Bramley-Moore Dock. Even though PSR permits expenditure on infrastructure such as stadiums, Everton anger is rooted partly in their belief that they are effectively being punished for building a magnificent new stadium that will bring jobs to the community and more glamour to the Premier League. They wanted change in interest rates to be taken into account.

Both clubs deserve some punishment, PSR needs respecting, but Everton's original ten points was excessive, and is being appealed against, with further sanction now threatened. The feeling that remains in all this is whether a bigger club, one of the Super League plotters, would be treated this toughly. And the answer is no. Masters has questions to answer to supporters, let alone to DCMS.

Dave Abrahams
27 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:51:24
Sam (31),

In your third paragraph, I hope you mean we get a 5- or 6-point deduction off the 10 points we were given in November – not another 5 or 6 points added on!

Kevin Edward
28 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:54:24
Reading through Lyndon's summary is not for the faint-hearted, but it's a good read for the calmness within.

This compares with punching the wall in, after listening to ‘self-appointed' experts in the media.

I hear a lot of ‘Well, they knew the rules so should accept the punishment', where in truth, the rules in place were vague, subject to interpretation, and punishments for perceived non-compliance made up ‘on the hoof' after the events under scrutiny.

Also, I hear ‘When did things start to unravel in the Boardroom?' Conveniently forgetting the fans' protests, where the media were happy to set our fans up as the bad guys and lambasted the demos and banners.

For me/ it's the ‘sporting advantage' that I just can't get my head around. It's not been mentioned much, but was wheeled out in the ruling on the first breach. Do we still have a sporting advantage?

We are getting battered, but I still believe the Premier League is tying itself in knots. A smart lawyer may be able to bring us out of this intact.

If there is a ‘hidden agenda', then the more we probe, the more likely it will come to the forefront. (see… The Post Office).

Christine Foster
29 Posted 16/01/2024 at 10:55:36

Moshiri is in damage limitation mode, but the irreparable self-harm, the years of offshore sharks, of Kenwright's financial wizards and Hollywood stars. the foundations of failure built by Kenwright, Green and Earl, the extortionate loans that crippled us, the 24/7 search to find a (mug) new owner...

Yes, Sam, the blame is well founded with those well before Moshiri... but his well-meaning incompetence or ignorance has resulted in gross mismanagement.

Bad enough. But compound it with the corrupt attempts to make a sacrificial lamb by the Premier League, a perfect storm.

We need to save the ship no matter who goes down, give them no quarter. Fight dirty, but fight to win.

Tony Waring
30 Posted 16/01/2024 at 11:41:33
The Premier League is kicking us whilst we are down.

Any chance of the VAR intervening? Just thought I'd mention it!

Graham Mockford
31 Posted 16/01/2024 at 12:08:53
I think the double jeopardy argument is a non-starter. The rules are fairly clear, it's a 3-year rolling calculation. We were well aware of this fact.

Also, the reason we could potentially be sanctioned twice in one season is because we pushed it out from last season, and good job too – we'd be in the Championship.

Sure we are on the rough end of the Premier League getting serious because the Independent Regulator is on the horizon.

The key will be the basis of the appeal. I'm guessing it's based on two things. The accounting allowables (most specifically capitalisation of interest payments on the new stadium) and the severity of the sanction which I think we have legitimate arguable points.

However, it all boils down to one thing. This club has been mismanaged by incompetent idiots for too long.

Raymond Fox
32 Posted 16/01/2024 at 12:27:57
It's anybody's guess where we will be in 12 months time.

We could be bust, we could be in the Championship, we could have stayed in the Premier League.

777 Partners might own us – no thanks – or may not.
Someone with serious money may have stepped in and saved us.

Who knows, I'm sick of all this nonsense. Watching and supporting Everton is now more likely to cause a nervous breakdown than give pleasure.

Barry Rathbone
33 Posted 16/01/2024 at 13:07:21
About the "sporting advantage" accusation, I wonder if they mean the continual Houdini escapes from relegation?

John Raftery
34 Posted 16/01/2024 at 13:09:17
Raymond (45) I think most of us feel as you do.

A question is where will the Premier League be in 12 months time. The Super League concept has not gone away while clubs like Villa and Newcastle find themselves hamstrung by PSR trying to break through the glass ceiling. Increasingly there is recognition of a ‘them and us' divide between Premier League clubs.

Perhaps the time has come to form a breakaway league to compete with the Premier League.

Phil Wood
35 Posted 16/01/2024 at 13:15:18

I know the feeling. I get depressed every time I put the sports news on.

I mistakenly had the impression 60-odd years ago that supporting football was a pleasurable pastime. Then I experienced years of a footballing rollercoaster supporting the Blues. The highs were massive but I have had to suffer many many lows too.

However that is or was football. You take the rough with the smooth and learn to take great pleasure from small achievements. Siege mentality bonds the fans together. It's all about being a Blue.

But this is different. I follow the news like a condemned man hoping for a stay of execution only to find that I am to be tortured first.

This is Hell.

Jeff Spiers
36 Posted 16/01/2024 at 13:35:50

With you all the way. At 71 years of age, I wonder about the future and what life throws at us. My missus can't understand the fuss about football.

"Supporters are born to support their team. We can't help it," I tell her.

We're all pissed off at the moment. EFC will never die. I'll talk to as many of you as I can. While I'm here! Stay healthy…

Dale Self
37 Posted 16/01/2024 at 13:52:09
It has the appearance of a prosecutor who realizes weaknesses in their case and responds by piling up charges to get the defendant to plea.
Brian Harrison
38 Posted 16/01/2024 at 14:12:22
I think the majority of fans from other clubs believe that we broke the P&S rules by buying players we couldn't afford to give us an unfair advantage.

But I believe that we are the 3rd lowest net spenders on transfers in the Premier League over the last 3 years.

While Moshiri during his ownership has demonstrated on numerous occasions his lack of football knowledge, I would have expected that an accountant who was in charge of billion-pound companies would have at least understood the financial implications that the Premier League had set.

We were told the club were working closely with the Premier League to make sure they didn't fall foul of P&S rules, yet they still fell foul of the rules. So did Moshiri divulge everything or did he just tell them what he wanted them to hear, believing we could escape any punishment because he had worked with the Premier League?

Danny O’Neill
39 Posted 16/01/2024 at 14:20:22
Yes, Brian, 3rd from bottom in net spend for 2023 with a minus £20k balance.

I'll have to disagree with you on other supporters. Yes, we broke the rules, but most, and I live amongst Chelsea as well as London Reds and United supporters and they are shocked at the punishment and treatment we have been given.

Ian Jones
40 Posted 16/01/2024 at 14:31:23
Great comments emanating from the original article. Another interesting read.

The only comment I have on the 'double jeopardy' area is that I don't see why people find it unfair to be potentially punished for a 'common year'. One 3-year period is different to another 3-year period. It is what it is. They are the rules. How everything is determined from a financial point of view is beyond me.

The only other thing I picked up from Lyndon's article is the following:

"The club can't take on a new sponsor for Finch Farm, for example, because the deal with USM is merely suspended but unlikely to ever be revived."

Surely this deal and others involving USM have gone way past being 'merely suspended'.

I guess there are contracts involved but we must be able to walk away from these contracts, without paying any compensation to USM and have the ability to look elsewhere, although not sure who would be daft enough to sponsor Finch Farm.

Raymond Fox
41 Posted 16/01/2024 at 15:36:03
As far as Moshiri selling the club is concerned, nobody will be able to value the club till all this nonsense is sorted out finally.

Whether 777 Partners – if they are declared fit to own the club – are still keen to buy must be in doubt. I'm not sure if they have signed any binding agreement to buy… do we know?

This other charge really puts our backs to the wall and proper.

Lyndon Lloyd
42 Posted 16/01/2024 at 15:38:29
Graham and Ian, the problem with the double jeopardy aspect is that it's so retrospective that Everton had no time to course-correct enough, specifically on how they treated the third-party loans in the accounts.

The club massively erred in not specifically allocating the Rights & Media Funding and Metro Bank loans to the stadium build and allocating Moshiri's funds to general operations but there was, at least, a rationale behind it. And they clearly felt they had enough mitigating circumstances to remain compliant.

As it turned out, the Premier League disagreed... at a commission hearing two years down the road! So we could get punished twice (potentially three times if we're over again next year) for the same 75% of a time block.

Rick Tarleton
43 Posted 16/01/2024 at 15:39:31
Punishment to Man City, Man Utd and to a lesser extent Chelsea would affect the Premier League. If potential Champions League winners are excluded and punished by a large points deduction, then the Premier League's claim (and Sky's claim) to be the best league of all would be affected.

So it is in the Premier League's interest to ignore (or complicate) the cases against Man City, Chelsea et alia.

Everton or Forest are purely a national concern, they do not have huge fan bases around the world and few beyond their home towns will be overly concerned whether they sink or swim.

Everton have a case to answer but, as Lyndon clearly points out, it is in the scheme of things a trivial case, admitted and small fry by the club itself. By having rules which in fact legalise double jeopardy and even triple jeopardy, the Premier League can continue to punish Everton indefinitely.

Justice, anyone? The same rules for all concerned anyone? I think we're in trouble till we sell Pickford, Onana, Branthwaite and possibly Calvert-Lewin and sign no-one to replace them.

Phil Friedman
44 Posted 16/01/2024 at 15:50:57
Nothing I've read actually specifies what our year-end financials showed.

Does anyone know if these are available anywhere, so we can see just what we are actually accused of? What actually is the great crime we are being charged with?

Graham Mockford
45 Posted 16/01/2024 at 15:56:33
Lyndon @63,

I don't think anyone can argue it's a sensible or even maybe a fair rule. But it's the rules we signed up to. It's never going to wash for us to say "Yes, we agreed to it but, now we've contravened it, we don't like it."

We need to be focussing on things we can control in the appeal such as accounting treatments and the severity of the sanction.

Jamie Crowley
46 Posted 16/01/2024 at 16:03:55
When is the freaking appeal?? Everything hinges on that appeal in my opinion.

This punishment, second time around, is legally ridiculous, at least in America. Don't the English have double jeopardy laws? You can't be tried twice for a law.

Surely you can't be sanctioned twice in a season, especially when all these applicable rules are going to be scrapped by August?

This is officially patently absurd.

Eddie Dunn
47 Posted 16/01/2024 at 16:07:52
Forgive me if this has already been mentioned, but I read that, come August, the Premier League will change the rules to concentrate on wages and turnover.

Now are we not spending a massive amount of our turnover on wages? If so, we could be on the naughty step again.

Rob Halligan
48 Posted 16/01/2024 at 16:19:00
Eddie, I see where you're coming from, but surely that would only apply for future signings, contract extensions etc.

I can't see any player, not just Everton's, accepting a pay cut just so that club stays within the limits. I can see Chelsea being massively affected by these new rules though!!

Jay Harris
49 Posted 16/01/2024 at 16:21:42
Some very good posts highlighting the injustice of the actions taken by Masters and his puppet masters but Paul the Esk is adamant that the second charge will not be upheld as we are well within compliance.

The irritating thing for me is the claim that Everton overspent on players to gain competitive advantage when it is clearly the cost of building a new stadium that put us in the hole.

I am also amazed that Barrett-Baxendale and Grant Ingles have not bothered to support the club with any input as their combined £8 million payoff is the biggest ripoff since the Great Train Robbery.

Mike Gaynes
50 Posted 16/01/2024 at 16:46:57
Trying to comprehend all this from my side of the pond has done a serious warp job on my brain, so I was delighted to read the clearest and most concise summary of the entire mess... from Andy Hunter at The Guardian:

What now for Everton after second Premier League charge?

It is no exaggeration to say that everything – from the extent of Everton's breaches to their Premier League status – rests on the outcome of their appeal. It will not only determine the final punishment for losses incurred up to 2022 but will have a knock-on effect for the charge relating to 2023 as well. Everton's focus is entirely on the appeal, not the ramifications of a second charge that cannot be considered until the appeal process is concluded.

The club's argument is twofold: that a 10-point deduction for a £19.5m overspend is grossly disproportionate and the commission was wrong to dismiss several of the mitigating factors Everton put forward. These include the loss of commercial deals connected to Usmanov and interest payable on loans the club maintain were taken out for the new stadium at Bramley-Moore dock. Should Everton win their appeal, and they have appointed Laurence Rabinowitz KC to lead it, then points will be returned and the mitigating factors may be used to throw out the second charge before a commission sits down to consider the case, because Everton could be compliant with PSR...

Everton have 14 days to reply to their latest charge and would ordinarily expect to discover their fate by early April, leaving time for an appeal. But Everton's appeal against the 10-point deduction takes precedent and must be concluded before the second charge is heard. In Everton's ideal scenario, the second charge never comes before a commission because the appeal against the first charge goes in their favour. The club is waiting to discover when the all-important appeal will take place.

Michael Bennet
51 Posted 16/01/2024 at 17:12:07
Does anyone have any idea who this independent panel are?
Geoff Hind
52 Posted 16/01/2024 at 17:15:08
What about CAS (Court of Arbitration for Sport)?
Jamie Crowley
53 Posted 16/01/2024 at 17:18:07
The club is waiting to discover when the all-important appeal will take place.

Ummmm Ya! Honestly these idiots at the Premier League can't even wrap one thing up before slinging shit on another mess.

The incompetence in the way this has been handled and adjudicated, especially when factoring in the simple comparison of a 9-point deduction for bankruptcy, and the 10 points levied against Everton for [only] a near £20 million overspend while building a stadium is unreal.

I don't blame a single Blue out there who's convinced the league is "out to get Everton" because it sure as hell seems that way!

Michael Kenrick
54 Posted 16/01/2024 at 17:44:06

One line stands out from that Guardian piece you published:

The commission was wrong to dismiss several of the mitigating factors Everton put forward.

I really do hope Rabinowitz can go to town on this key aspect of the judgement against us, and it is not just brushed aside as "new evidence" – which, as I understand it, is not allowed at the appeal.

Graham Mockford
55 Posted 16/01/2024 at 17:48:07

It can't be new evidence if it was raised in the initial hearing.

It just means we can't argue new mitigating factors at appeal.

Michael Kenrick
56 Posted 16/01/2024 at 17:54:26
Geoff @62,

It's a great question. Many are saying once the appeal is done, that's the end of the line for Everton, even if they are still aggrieved.

Some have said that court proceedings external to the Premier League cannot be invoked in this case. I tried searching the Handbook and could find no such prohibition, but that might be my error.

In retrospect, perhaps the first thing Everton should have done after the independent commission was go straight to court and obtain an injunction against the Premier League deducting any points in lieu of the appeal.

But that would have required balls and smarts — two things sadly absent from our senior executives and their compliant legal team thus far.

Hopefully the signing of Laurence Rabinowitz KC demonstrates a whole new and very much more aggressive stance will be taken against the injustices at the appeal.

Ian Wilkins
57 Posted 16/01/2024 at 18:03:50
Michael and Geoff,

I think the view on further legal recourse is dismissed because the Premier League is essentially a private club with its own rules, signed up to by its members.

In such circumstances, the law has no jurisdiction.

The role of the Independent commission is to ensure the club rules have been properly applied, and then penalise accordingly. The failing with the latter is the lack of a penalty structure, one of the strands of our appeal.

Rick Tarleton
58 Posted 16/01/2024 at 18:05:45
Any would-be dramatists among our group? ITV would love another fact-based drama built around injustice against the "little" target.
Phil (Kelsall) Roberts
59 Posted 16/01/2024 at 18:05:59
Let's be honest - the Premier League is quite boring. We know Man City or that lot will win it. Arsenal will get a Champions League place. The same three will be in the Cup Final. It will be Chelsea v them lot in the Carabao Cup final.

So the Premier League need something to generate interest in the product – so let's get a couple of easy hits and charge them with financial issues. Keeps it in the headlines and generates some heat.

Joe McMahon
60 Posted 16/01/2024 at 18:08:03
Phil, you missed out that lot beating Chelsea on penalties like they did twice in 2022.
Brent Stephens
61 Posted 16/01/2024 at 18:23:21
Geoff #62, and Michael #66, the Premier League Handbook includes:

W.79. Subject to the provisions of Section X (Arbitration) of these Rules, the decision of an Appeal Board shall be final.

However, I thought I read somewhere something along the lines that as the Premier League submits itself to Uefa rules, it thereby agrees to submit itself to the jurisdiction and decisions of the European Court of Justice (despite the UK no longer being part of the EU). Can't remember where I read that, and I might well be misremembering.

Bill Piscass
62 Posted 16/01/2024 at 18:57:25
"We don't care what the corrupt twats say, what the fuc do we care."

Followed by "FA are wankers!"

John Raftery
63 Posted 16/01/2024 at 18:57:43

You are amazed Barrett-Baxendale and Grant Ingles have not bothered to support the club. I'm not. We sacked them!

In my opinion, that was an error from both a financial and tactical perspective. No matter how galling, we should have kept them on the payroll and given them the responsibility to account for the club's actions at the first hearing.

They presumably had first-hand knowledge of the discussions with the Premier League.

Anyway that's all in the past. In regard to the appeal, all Rabinowitz can do now is argue the mitigation factors and pick holes in the rationale for, and scale of, the deduction.

Like others, I would like to know the extent of our latest breach in a year when we purchased McNeil, Onana, Maupay and Garner but sold Anthony Gordon and Moise Kean.

Tony Mace
65 Posted 16/01/2024 at 19:37:13
Surely if an investigation into Man City is opened prior to the investigation into Everton, then the Man City investigation should be concluded first – especially when the outcome of the Man City investigation is clearly linked to the financial affairs of all other clubs in the Premier League.
Graeme Dodd
66 Posted 16/01/2024 at 20:10:37
Not sure if it has been mentioned but I think there is a route to arbitration if the appeal doesn't go our way – only limited grounds for this though and the outcome of the appeal stands in the meantime.

Premier League Handbook, 2023-24 Season

Someone may have the time and inclination to explore further if there is no beer in the fridge or anything on TV that is.

Pete Neilson
67 Posted 16/01/2024 at 20:14:44

It's certainly a different environment in that the UK government is involved in the Man City case. The Foreign Office has been in discussions with the UAE about the potential fall out from the case. This was revealed in The Athletic last year.


The Foreign Office said “no comment” when asked for details on the discussions as that alone could cause a diplomatic incident. The Premier League simply refused to answer, so much for transparency. Man City will almost certainly walk away from this relatively unscathed.

Brent Stephens
68 Posted 16/01/2024 at 20:15:13

That arbitration reference is in Section X of the Premier League Handbook.

Brent Stephens
69 Posted 16/01/2024 at 20:23:10
Pete #79 - thanks for the link.

UAE relations and geopolitics trump the integrity of the Premier League.

George Stuart
70 Posted 16/01/2024 at 22:03:21
There really is something disturbing about all of this in a profoundly deep way.

This process is not designed to help and protect the game. I am usually one to scoff at conspiracy theories, but I feel there is an agenda here. Maybe to trim off the nearly clubs.
Aston Villa, watch out.

Anyway, if they kill Everton, I will turn away from the game completely and encourage everyone I meet to do the same.

David West
71 Posted 16/01/2024 at 22:35:43
No Premier League club has ever been charged with a PSR breach before Everton.

Why in the year that an independent regulator is being forced on the Premier League, they now suddenly have 3 breaches?

I've just watched the whole select committee hearing and, apart from 2 of the members, they haven't got a clue! These are the people who will end up regulating the independent body, what hope do fans have??

One member started talking about Cameroon reaching a semi-final in 1990?? Most of the MPs have no knowledge of the ins and outs of the game and are unable to hold the Premier League to account.

Masters's arrogance and contempt at some of the questions was telling, it mirrors that of the Premier League.

My one question on this second charge is this: Are we over by the same £19.5M as the first charge? Can anyone shed any light on this?

Don Alexander
72 Posted 16/01/2024 at 22:44:42
The owners of Man City and Newcastle Utd rule, without restraint, their fabulously wealthy nations.

Those same owners spend, to them, a mere pittance to the UK economy for goods, weapons and services, whereas our bozos in Parliament consider with justification, so poor is their management of our country, that such a pittance is 100% vital to our nation's current benefit.

Man Utd, Liverpool, Arsenal and Spurs are owned by American financial "legends" who no doubt inveigle their way into the UK Parliamentary hierarchy as a matter of course as they boost profit to themselves via their ownership of our, erm, "top" clubs.

On the other hand, we recently admitted by him to the football authorities who punished us accordingly, are owned by an overtly misleading, wholly incompetent, so-called internationally-savvy accountant (as he claimed) and thus we face nothing but even more diminished prospects for seasons to come.... at best!

Hans Fyhrqvist
73 Posted 16/01/2024 at 22:44:58
Yes, a great summary by Lyndon about the state of Everton and the Premier League as a whole at this moment.

Yet we must still be hopeful, even confident, that our representatives and legal team can bring our appeal to a positive conclusion: if we don´t get all or even the majority of those deducted points back, we should and could get at least half of them in our tally.

After that, our lawyers will surely tackle that second charge with all the facts which we believe will favor our case.

Let´s hope our football team has the mental capacity to concentrate on performing with vigour and determination. And of course we fans must support our team whatever will happen, through thick and thin. We are after all Evertonians, proud and resilient. The tide will turn, it always does.

Kevin Palmer
74 Posted 16/01/2024 at 23:06:00
Don Alexander,

Spurs is definitely British owned. In fact, something till recently called the English National Investment Company owned most of it. Levy (also English, also a significant partial owner of the English National Investment Company) owns the rest.

Liverpool is owned by an American firm - Fenway Sports Group. But, they're a very well run firm. Ask Red Sox or Liverpool supporters. I think we'd all take them over 777 Pyramid Scheme Partners in a heartbeat.

Okay, I'll allow the other two!

Don Alexander
75 Posted 16/01/2024 at 23:46:19

Joe Lewis (Spurs) has no meaningful history of acquiring very much of his alleged £5billion+ personal fortune working within the UK. On the contrary, he's largely worked in the US or Caribbean and "sold" Spurs only in 2022 to the new owners, The Lewis Family Trust. Hmm.

Anyway, the point I'm making is that, to varying but very meaningful degrees, the owners of all our self-promoting "Top 6" clubs, now massively also including Labour-city Newcastle United, very well know how to grease the wheels of those in Parliamentary power, so that football governance of their very own clubs is, well, limited to the point of being non-existent.

This is in stark contrast to any other club outside that cartel where opaque and, as of today inadequate Premier League rules, self-admittedly in Parliament by the Premier League itself, sustained their hammering of our great club (the cancer of Kenwright and Moshiri now being on the cusp of being eviscerated... to Christ knows who though!)

Steve Oshaugh
76 Posted 17/01/2024 at 01:06:32
I will put on my helmet and duck for cover but I really don't understand all this talk of conspiracy theories and double jeopardy. I don't like the system in place at all but we signed up to it along with everyone else in the Premier League.

It seems to me that our club officials are more culpable than most in this. Don't sign the agreement that put the methodology in place if you don't understand it... don't whinge afterwards.

It seems to me that a rolling 3-year period is not difficult to understand at all and clearly allows for the prospect of a terrible year hanging over you for 3 years.

The fairly simple equation is that you have to make significant changes that get you back under the limits. Not just significant changes... The calculation is surely straightforward maths: A+B+C must be less than minus £105M...

When you know what A and B are it is scarcely believable that you can't work out what C needs to be. We all make those adjustments in our personal or professional lives all the time.

I think 10 points is harsh but I don't disagree with getting a punishment... the business chose not to correct the situation fully (apparently hoping for a top 6 finish to balance the books – that optimism alone is staggering).

ToffeeWeb as a community has largely been critical of this ownership and the ridiculous way it has been run for years. The only thing that really surprises me is that somehow it was only £19.5M over in the last period.

The major culprits in this are the board and owner. We were just lucky that the 10 points wasn't deducted in the previous season... As it stands, we might just get away with it.

I will support the team no matter what, of course.

John Keating
77 Posted 17/01/2024 at 01:42:14

Nobody is arguing that we, and the rest, signed up to it. The issue, in my opinion and others, is that the Premier League said it was up to the “independent” commission to determine the actual result. It was completely open-ended;

However, Masters – during our trial – “guided” the commission on what he expected the result to be.

Even in law, there are guidelines on which a judge can give to a convicted criminal. In our case, it was whatever suited.

Si Cooper
78 Posted 17/01/2024 at 05:56:13
“It's not difficult to understand at all and clearly allows for the prospect of a terrible year hanging over you for 3 years.”

It's precisely the one terrible year causing multiple punishments that is the one nuts thing about the 3 rolling years. The model can work fine if you are fairly consistently in debt each year because you are then not showing any improvement and probably deserve the repeated punishment.

If it's only one terrible year, then that should probably be enough for you to get a suspended sentence and if you are then well within limits for the following years then the sentence should be suspended until that one terrible year is no longer a factor.

I don't know if that applies to Everton's case though. I thought our losses were more evenly spread across the 3 or 4 years.

Brendan McLaughlin
79 Posted 17/01/2024 at 08:04:56
Steve #85,

A very mature and rational post. You pretty much nailed it there.

Brendan McLaughlin
80 Posted 17/01/2024 at 08:25:20
David #80,

I don't think anyone knows if it's the same £19.5 million but that's very unlikely as it would mean that we made neither a profit or loss in 2022-23 but achieved perfect break even.

Much more likely that we've either decreased the £19.5 million overspend which the new Independent Commission should look favourably upon… or increased the overspend which simply doesn't bear thinking about.

By the way, agree about the Select Committee members... largely an embarrassment.

Jim Lloyd
81 Posted 17/01/2024 at 08:54:32

The club didn't sack them, according to their own statement. Their statement included a sentence on the lines "We felt honour-bound to resign." and how much they loved the club.

It would seem to me that, if they loved the club so much, they'd have stayed and fought. Them leaving meant that every board member involved in the mis management of our club over years, had scooted with a pay off before the end of the season.

They could have been forced out of course, and the statement might have just been a diplomatic way of leaving. Of course the main member of the board has departed pemanently. As the Chairman of the board throughout this period (and much longer) in my view he's the one mainly responsible for the terrible mess we're in.

How do we get out of it? Well, it seems our hopes rest in the Legal Eagles we've got to fight in the courts.

What a disgusting way to run a football league.

Jimmy I'Anson
82 Posted 17/01/2024 at 09:54:59
The Premier League are not above the law. Everton FC are a UK limited company and have a right to trade in the UK market under the rules of fair trading. We also have the Competition Commission (formerly Monopolies Commission) who are tasked with dealing with any "Anti-competitive practices".

The Premier League are not above this and Everton should take it to the real courts, not the Premier League kangaroo court.

Rob Halligan
83 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:13:55
Brendan # 91, and others…

The following link is a breakdown of all incoming and outgoing transfers for season 2022-23, the season which this second charge seems to relate to. Total income shows as £90M, whilst total expenditure shows as £67M. Both tables are initial fees only, so I presume they don't include add-ons etc.

So according to these tables, we have a net profit of £23M for transfers in season 2022-23. Obviously there are also wages to consider, but I believe our wage bill is down from previous seasons, whilst the likes of Conor Coady, Ruben Vinagre (signed on loan) and Neal Maupay have since left either on loan or loan deal ended, so most, if not all of their wages will be off the wage bill.

Anyway, just taking transfer fees alone, we have a net profit of £23M, which, if we deduct the loss of £19.5M from the previous year in question, 2021-22, means there is a small profit of £3.5M. We then need to consider the compensation payments for sacking Benitez and whatever backroom staff he had. This can't have added up to much, but would it be enough to outweigh the £3.5M?

I guess there are plenty of other incomings and expenditures to consider but, in my opinion, these are the main ones to consider.

Hope I've got this right and it makes sense…

Michael Lynch
84 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:14:50
Where are Grant Ingles and Little Miss Dynamite now? Refusing to engage with this process, and refusing to explain the accounts. Refusing to have anything to do with the mess they left behind.

I can only assume that they have lawyered up and have been told to make no comment.

The Premier League is a disgrace, but its incompetence and stupidity is matched by that of our old board and our current owner. It's the perfect storm, or the marriage made in hell, whichever way you look at it – the people who run the Premier League and the people who run Everton, two cheeks of the same despicable arse.

Dave Lynch
85 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:25:43
There is only one person who is responsible for our plight...I know its not nice to speak ill of the dead but BK was/is responsible for this mess.
Im convinced he knew we were fucked years ago and the reverted to type by lying, squirming and setting others up to take the fall.
He has for me left only a legacy of destruction and chaos behind.
It was him alone that has destroyed this club
Tony McNulty
86 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:27:01
What an appalling mess, that the people who had the privilege of being the temporary custodians of the asset that is Everton Football Club have put us in this position.

Pete Neilson
87 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:27:04
It might be a blessing that Ingles and Barrett-Baxendale aren't involved. It'd probably be an even worse outcome relying on that pair of eejits to help us.
Rob Halligan
88 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:29:17
Just something else to add to what I said above. Taking the figures I've quoted above into account, does it in fact mean our loss of £19.5M has reduced to £16M?

I don't know, it's too confusing for me!! 🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️

Brian Harrison
89 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:35:43
Just a couple of points if as Masters claimed the commission was independent then why did the Premier league say that if Everton were found guilty they should be docked 12 points. I mean if you appoint the panel and then tell them what the outcome should be if found guilty it doesn't look as if the process has been independent.

Also the Premier League is run like a private club of 20 and they collectively agree what the rules of that club are, so I am not sure that we could take it to a normal court.

I haven't seen anywhere how much we or Forest have transgressed the rules. I am pretty confident we won't be anywhere near the £19.5M overspend that was on the last set of accounts.

I thought somebody might have published the accounts which were lodged at Companies House on the 31 December, so I am sure they are in the public domain.

Si Cooper
90 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:36:33
Rob (95), isn’t most of our income from TV rights and most of the expenditure on outgoings? I’m not sure just considering transfers is going to give a sufficiently accurate figure.
Rob Halligan
91 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:42:34
Brian # 101………the way I see it is we could have a net profit for 22/23, but it is a profit less than £19.5M, hence the charge for the three year period ending 22/23. In order to have avoided this charge, I think we needed a profit greater than £19.5M.
Rob Halligan
92 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:47:07
Si # 102………….i really don’t know mate. I can’t believe I missed off income from TV Rights, which is how much, £100M+. I guess we will have to wait for the full accounts before flying off the rails.
Brent Stephens
93 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:51:03
I'm still intrigued by Masters' comment that "they [Man City] are very different charges...The volume and character of the charges laid against City...are being heard in a completely different environment".

What is this "completely different environment"? I can undersatnd that there might be both PSR and non-PSR charges against City but why cannot the former be heard now?

John Chambers
94 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:53:30
Rob #95, I think your numbers are wrong. I believe Richarlison was sold on June 30 22 so was included in 21/22 numbers. On the plus side we did also sell Moise Kean for, I think, £28m.
What is important to remember though is the accounting treatment of those transfers. If all the players we bought were on a 5 year contract the figure that would go into the PSR numbers would be about £13.5 m as the amortisation of those “assets” not £67m. That also means players bought in previous years will still show as a cost in the 22/23 numbers, e.g.Nathan Patterson will have an amortisation value in the books of about £2.5m per year until the period of his contract completes.
On the sales front the full value of the Gordon transfer will be treated as income in 22/23 but for Kean we would probably only get a net benefit of about £20m as he probably was still had a value of about £8m in the books from when we bought him.
It just shows that it is not as easy as just looking at the transfers in the year when you look at how they are actually accounted for
Brendan McLaughlin
95 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:54:54
Brian #101

It's a bit like the prosecution asking for a particular sentence at trial. They can ask but it doesn't make the Judge any less independent.

Dave Abrahams
96 Posted 17/01/2024 at 10:56:32
Contrast the two posts of Steve (85) and Christine (87), what a difference of opinion.

I hope our Barrister defending our case for a reputed £100, 000 plus vat handles it as well as Christine describes the utter unfairness of how we were treated.

Christine would cost a lot less, can the barrister employ her in an advisory capacity?

John Chambers
97 Posted 17/01/2024 at 11:01:08
Brian #101. Another point about Masters in yesterday’s discussion was his comment that he doesn’t think the appeal will have any impact on the latest charges. How can he possibly say that? If our appeal is successful and our loan interest can be off set against the stadium we will not be in breach either year!
Or have the panel already been told what the outcome of the appeal is??
Dave Abrahams
98 Posted 17/01/2024 at 11:02:16
Brendan (107) If the prosecution asks for a sentence that is way beyond the alleged offence then I think the judge would simple use his common sense and ignore the nudge off the prosecution.
Rob Halligan
99 Posted 17/01/2024 at 11:02:35
John # 106……….yes, I understand that a transfer fee is paid over the length of a players contract, and it’s that annual payment figure that is shown on the accounts. I should have mentioned that in my original post.

It’s the reason why Chelsea were handing out ridiculous contracts for certain players.

Graham Mockford
100 Posted 17/01/2024 at 11:12:43
Brian 101

One of the big issues is our growing debt which is now nearly £1bn at least half of which is unsecured and being charged at commercial rates of interest.

That’s going to be in the region of £30m a year by my reckoning. That’s straight off the P&L

Ian Wilkins
101 Posted 17/01/2024 at 11:41:40
Graham @112,

True we have a significant debt position, but it has arisen in the main creating a £750m asset which, if managed correctly and commercially, should generate excellent future revenue streams, including naming rights.

Brendan McLaughlin
102 Posted 17/01/2024 at 11:58:31
Rob #103

That's how I see it.

The six million (billion ?) dollar question is how an Independent Commission will view Everton making a profit but not one large enough to clear the PSR breach.

Graham Mockford
103 Posted 17/01/2024 at 12:04:28
Rob @103,

Don't think that's correct.

Arguments about accounting treatments aside, the new accounts would have to be £19.5M better than the year dropping off.

David West
104 Posted 17/01/2024 at 19:09:08

My initial thought on the second breach was if last year we were working on an assumption that we were compliant but were £19.5M over. The club's statements kind of alluded to this being the same breach.

Have the club just continued calculating the figures as if we will be cleared? Therfore, the same £19.5M would put you over again.

It seems crazy to have the Premier League tell you you are over the limit by £19.5M and for the club to then still go over the following year.

A player sale would easily have seen that small difference wiped out. Or just not signing players. I know we've been run by clowns, but even I can add to 105 !!!

I'd love to know whose accounts Moshiri used to do, because I'd like to do them, make a few billion without knowing basic arithmetic!

Chris Leyland
105 Posted 17/01/2024 at 19:13:48

It depends when we discovered that the league decided that we were £19.5M over in the previous accounts and whether we then had time to reduce costs in 2022-23.

Mike Dolan
106 Posted 17/01/2024 at 19:22:11
This is a great article, Lyndon. Thank you so much for the clarity that you bring to this existential issue.

I can only add that Little Dick Masters comes across as being both smug and condescending and, while his mother might like him, he is the worst person I can think of to run a large organization of any kind.

This entire process that he has reigned over is so bollixed up that I am surprised that Everton still have any case left against them. What kind of CEO would go before a before a government hearing and declare that 10% at least of the clubs that he is representing are to his mind ‘small clubs'???

David West
107 Posted 17/01/2024 at 19:26:06

Wasn't it roughly the same as this charge? Around 2 weeks after submitting the accounts.

Christine Foster
108 Posted 18/01/2024 at 03:17:40
Chris, a couple of things.

It depends on when the greatest loss was in the 3-year cycle, how much it was, and if it therefore impacted on the third rolling year.

I suspect that the nub of all this was the allowance (or not as it happened) of the interest on loans for the stadium. The club probably included them in the accounts to mitigate the losses but they have been knocked by the Premier League's "independent" accountant out for all 3 years involved. Hence the feeling if we win the appeal then the second charge will not apply.

A few assumptions in there of course...

Phil Wood
109 Posted 18/01/2024 at 12:07:37
I hope you have been listening to Jim White on Talksport this morning with guest Stefan Borson. Looks like there is a big chance that we will be hit with a 3rd charge for the next set of accounts. Borson was very clued up on the laws and "rules" and thinks we are in for more trouble.

Also stated that Man City's charges, if proven, would see them at least relegated and much more. However, with the parties involved, it would take a lot more than a Premier League commission to take it to task. Won't happen.

Grim but fascinating listening. Looks bad for us.

Sean Mitchell
110 Posted 18/01/2024 at 12:11:38
Phil #110

Yes, I had it on and heard every word he said.

We're doomed.

Phil Wood
111 Posted 18/01/2024 at 12:23:05
Yes Sean,
my thoughts exactly.
Stephen Vincent
112 Posted 18/01/2024 at 12:39:03
#110, #111, What a complete load of garbage.

I didn't hear the piece as I rarely listen to TalkShite Radio. How can anyone say what our situation will be when the current financial year ends on 30 June 2024???

We still have the balance of this transfer window plus the first month of the summer window to put the books in order (if indeed they need putting in order). We don't know what our situation will be after our TWO appeals have been heard and the Premier League rules will change in August. Plus the unpalatable fact that, if things go against us, we may not even be in the Premier League.

So please just ignore these gobshites who know considerably less than the average fan who was at the game last night.

The likes of Jim White exist because we all go 'Ooh I heard it on the radio, therefore it must be true'. While his rumours and idiocy may fill a gap on a slow news day, the proliferation of them just encourages the moron.

Anthony Hawkins
113 Posted 18/01/2024 at 12:46:16
I find it very tough to palate that only Everton and Nottingham Forest have breached PSR. There's no way. Both have shown clear and obvious evidence they might have (eg, Forest's volume of players bought and Everton's new stadium build) but Chelsea must have.

Man Utd are all over the place but I guess they have funds in reserve? etc, etc. The Premier League have simply gone for the easy option and doubt they've done any digging into other teams' accuracy of accounts.

Looking at our own predicament, should the Premier League persist with the current approach, any team having an off-year, it could impact them 3 times because of the phasing on the terms. First offence being current year (plus two others), second offence as it's still on the term coverage, and third offence as it's the last year in the calculation. Will the Premier League increase the penalisation on 2nd and 3rd repeat offenses?

The Premier League knew Everton didn't have time to adjust or correct the deficit before the next accounts submission because the judgement was mid-season and the Transfer window was closed. Our hands were tied. It just doesn't make any reasonable sense and the timing of the hearing is beyond fishy for that reason.

Whilst officially there's no escalation point to the courts, someone has to do what the Post Office employees did - whistle blow and take the Premier League to court with a legal angle of neglect of duty or something. Anything. The Post Masters were under NDAs yet found a route, presumably through an unconscionable contract.

The recent Committee conversation with Masters highlights everything that's wrong with the Premier League. The panel members know it and are biding their time.

Phil Wood
114 Posted 18/01/2024 at 12:47:08
Stephen @113,

I understand your reluctance to listen to certain media outlets but I would suggest you lower your standards and catch up on the podcast.

This wasn't Jim White making statements. This is a guy who is well versed in financial and legal ins and outs.

Sean Mitchell
115 Posted 18/01/2024 at 12:59:39
Phil #115 (that sounds familiar).

I second that.

Jim White wasn't doing the talking.

(Jim White actually makes me cringe).

Stephen Vincent
116 Posted 18/01/2024 at 13:03:15
Phil, all I am saying is that, with so many imponderables, it is absolutely impossible for anyone to 'predict' where we will be this time next year.

As far as I am aware, the 2022-23 accounts are not yet in the public domain and, if Everton's past attitude continues, they won't be until 31 March (when they will be available at Companies House). So, unless this guy is blessed with second sight or a crystal ball, he cannot possibly know what will happen.

Dave Abrahams
117 Posted 18/01/2024 at 13:17:03
Stephen (117),

It should also be noted that the rules are changing in August this year so nobody knows what those rules and conditions will be, not even that dickhead Masters, and it's quite possible that he won't have been able to hold on to his job!

Dave Abrahams
118 Posted 18/01/2024 at 13:25:35
Stephen (117),

Apologies, I never read your post @113 where you stated the rules will change this August. Fools rush in etc, sorry about that.

John Chambers
119 Posted 18/01/2024 at 13:41:22
Stephen #117.

I agree entirely with you about how anyone can say we are facing a future sanction. Even if you look at the current penalty, based on being £19.5M over the limit, a sale of, say, Pickford for £40M at the same time as Richarlison would have brought us into compliance, so there is plenty of time to change the financial picture.

I appreciate that would have had a detrimental impact on the team but the finances can be managed.

Stephen Vincent
120 Posted 18/01/2024 at 14:23:43
Raymond, as I understand it, it is not the interest payments per se that were discounted by the Commission, but the nature of the loan agreement between the club and Moshiri, which was drawn up in such a way that it was unclear what the funds were to be used for.

So interest payments on a loan specifically made to fund the construction of the new stadium would have been allowed but interest payments on a loan designated to be used for 'administration expenses' is not, irrespective of what the funds were ultimately used for.

Again I believe that this is demonstrated by the actual loan appearing on the Everton Football Club Ltd accounts but the interest appearing in the Everton Stadium Ltd accounts. When you look at the Group accounts, it makes no difference but, when broken down into the component parts for P&S, that is when the issue becomes apparent.

Ed Prytherch
121 Posted 18/01/2024 at 14:35:36
The key is to get the £30M annual interest charge off the books by selling the club to someone who will turn the debt into equity.

It will be hard to be in compliance with that £30M millstone around our necks.

Ed Prytherch
122 Posted 18/01/2024 at 15:34:49
Spurs showed how to build a stadium and stay out of trouble by limiting transfer losses and not changing managers during the construction period. Their transfer costs from 2013-14 to 2017-18 were £446M and their sales were £424M, a net spend of £22M.

Their spending increased significantly after the new stadium started generating revenue. Everton simultaneously borrowed to finance player transactions, salaries and stadium construction. That is why we are in a mess.

James Marshall
123 Posted 18/01/2024 at 15:42:29
Does anyone else feel uneasy about the Premier League appointing a different panel for us and Forest? That to me smacks of it being about personal opinion, and not about rules and facts being adhered to, if you know what I mean?

Surely any panel should be the same panel. Why does it require a different panel, and thus a different opinion on what should be a factual matter?

Anthony Hawkins
124 Posted 18/01/2024 at 16:01:09

The rules changed after Spurs built their stadium and they were able to offset more expenses and interest than Everton are due to the rule changes.

Joe McMahon
125 Posted 18/01/2024 at 16:19:58

NFL also funded Spurs' new stadium by contributing £10 million to host NFL games, as it's in London.

Dave Lynch
126 Posted 18/01/2024 at 16:31:22
Let's face it.

The Premier League case against us is so full of holes, double standards and inaccuracies — a decent lawyer would pull it apart in a heartbeat.

Phil Wood
127 Posted 18/01/2024 at 16:33:29
Ed @123,

Spurs have Daniel Levy. A brilliant business brain.

Ed Prytherch
128 Posted 18/01/2024 at 17:17:22
Anthony 126 - the rules started in 2013 just as Spurs started stadium construction. The rules for us are the same as for them.

Phil, I don't know if Levy has a brilliant business brain but it is certainly an order of magnitude better than that of Kenwright and Moshiri.

Joe McMahon
129 Posted 18/01/2024 at 17:27:53

I think it's fair to say apart from Kenwright's search for the Billionaire and who we got, the biggest negative impact has been the failure of Kings Dock. We would have been in it for a few years now.

Brian Harrison
130 Posted 18/01/2024 at 17:31:03
Ed @130,

I would imagine that Spurs took out loans to build their new stadium and were prudent enough to ring-fence the money for the stadium.

Whereas the £200M loan from Rights & Media Funding and the £100M from MSP Sports Capital were put into Everton's general finances. Had they designated that money for the stadium build, we wouldn't be in the mess we are in.

Also, Levy and his backers were smart enough to realize the NFL play at least 1 game a year at Wembley, so we will build a retractable pitch that can be replaced with a surface for an NFL game.

Spurs so far haven't used the naming rights of the stadium for extra finances, and Levy has said the offer for the naming rights would have to be spectacular for them to consider it.

Now obviously being in the capital is a big draw for NFL clubs and I am sure their season ticket prices reflect in them being based in London. I know Danny lives in London and has many friends who support London clubs. It would be interesting if he knows what Spurs, Arsenal and Chelsea charge for season tickets.

Ed Prytherch
131 Posted 18/01/2024 at 18:25:59
The NFL rent Tottenham stadium for games. That must be a good source of income compared to the £10M that they fronted for construction.

I recall reading how the new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock would generate revenue from non-football events but maybe that was a dream or a marketing device.

It is easy to complain about Man City but we should be comparing ourselves with the likes of Brighton and Aston Villa.

David West
132 Posted 18/01/2024 at 18:35:55
Brian @132.

Yes, Spurs, Arsenal and Chelsea season tickets are probably the price of a small house near Goodison, mate!

They may generate more income but they spend probably roughly the same percentage of that income as we and most other clubs do. It's a balancing act if your Forest generating £100M or Spurs generating £250M.

Everton's first charge seems a technicality, which – considering the Premier League have had us in special measures for a couple of years – seems like they have given us the rope to hang ourselves.

The second charge after us already being sanctioned is like them kicking away the chair to tighten the noose.

Did Everton not run it by the league first? We're we given assurance? If we were not sure what was allowable or not, why didn't we check?

We must generally know the projected income before a season, give or take a few cup games. How it's come to this is baffling!!!

Steve Brown
133 Posted 19/01/2024 at 04:53:47
I am guessing 10 - 4 + 6 = 12 points deduction as the outcome for the appeal and the new charge.

Hope I am right as we might just survive that. Any worse and I am seriously scared. If it is more punitive, we need to be ready and prepared right now to take it to the UK courts and Court of Sports Arbitration.

Si Cooper
134 Posted 19/01/2024 at 05:39:48
Rob (92) - my original post should have said ‘expenditure on wages'.

I'm still seeing people diligently totting up transfer ins and outs with no figures for wages and TV income and a bundle of other credits and debits. I'm pretty sure only looking at transfers won't give you an accurate enough figure to get excited about / dismayed at.

One thing to consider about Spurs' business acumen – when you were able to sell the likes of Bale at peak times in the market, it will have been a massive help in balancing those books.

Charles Brewer
135 Posted 19/01/2024 at 12:30:48
Last night, I saw a production of Brecht's 'The Resistable Rise of Arturo Ui' which I hadn't seen since (I think), a production at the Everyman many years ago). It's satirical allegory of the rise of Hitler reset in a 1920s-30s Chicago.

Mostly it's about the selective use of corruption to gain access to assets for profit. There's a bit of murder, but only when corruption hasn't worked.

Given the nature of the revolting club across the park (their dumping of easily their best manager ever, Bill Shankly, who was more welcome at Goodison than at the cesspit), I would not be in the least surprised to discover that there was a conspiracy amongst the "Sky Six" (apart from Man City, who seem to have decent owners) to destroy Everton financially and let LFC have the new ground at a knockdown price.

I suspect the fans placards "EPL = Corrupt" are much closer to reality than any other interpretation.

Don Alexander
136 Posted 20/01/2024 at 01:27:56
Judd Trump having quickly won a place in his latest snooker final, I was left without something interesting to watch on TV this evening…

In an admittedly bizarre meandering state of aging mind, I chanced upon a Youtube rendition of The Fix, a 1997 TV drama-doc about Tony Kay and the farrago that ruined his career and life on account of the fixated arrogance of the football powers-that-were in 1964.

It all seemed to me that the draconian sentence on him (and our club) is so very much plus-ca-change when it comes to today's football governance regarding Everton.

Especially when, in the film, Kay in 1964 allegedly said, "Everyone in the game knows football is thoroughly corrupt, but for all that I love the game!"

Glad he's an Everton legend!

Jerome Shields
137 Posted 22/01/2024 at 17:28:32
I didn't like the film Double Jeopardy. I much preferred Dead on Arrival.
Anthony Hawkins
138 Posted 23/01/2024 at 09:09:58
@Ed, I'm pretty sure I read the amount able to be offset was changed. It could also have been in the way it was handled by the club.
Liam Heffernan
139 Posted 24/01/2024 at 16:51:24
Just read that we are going to be charged with third breach of PSR. Does anyone know what’s happening. Are we being charged with the same offence as it appears in at least 3 consecutive 3 year cycles or are these 3 breaches totally different offences. I’m confused please someone unconfuse me.

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