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Ben Hayes - Charlton Athletic programme

Football Finance

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Rationality, Kim Jong-un and the transfer window

Everyday understandings of rationality often miss the point.  You may disapprove of someone's objectives, but that does not make them irrational.  For example, portly North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un is clearly a nasty piece of work.

Football luxury tax could be blocked by EU

Uefa is becoming increasingly concerned about competitive imbalance in European football with the emergence of super clubs, state surrogates in the case of Paris Saint-Germain.   They think that a situation in which only a small number of clubs could win the Champions League could reduce the appeal of the game and hence broadcast income.

EFL wants a slice of the action in China

The draw for the much derided Carabao (i.e. League) cup took place at 4.15 am UK time.  Mouthy Charlton manager Karl Robinson will sound off at any opportunity to get a quote, but this time I agreed with him when he said that he could not respect a competition which held its draw in the small hours of the morning (not to mention the mistakes in earlier draws with Charlton drawn twice in the first round).

Bolton should escape points deduction

Bolton Wanderers should escape a points deduction after Sports Shield, the company that owned 37.5 per cent of the club, entered voluntary liquidation.

The EFL have announced that they will 'review' the situation with an announcement expected in September. However, it would be a great shock if they took any action against Bolton.  If a club appoints receivers, a ten point deduction is automatic.  If the parent company (in this case not even a majority one) appoints receivers, it becomes a matter for discretion.

Morecambe's troubles continue

Following an ownership fiasco involving an absent new owner who turned out not to have the readies (yet again), Morecamble were in serious financial trouble last season with players not being paid.

After the Shrimps' new Brazilian owner Diego Lemos went AWOL, Italian businessman Joseph Cala claimed to have bought the club.  He turned up at the Globe Arena and started giving it large, before Lemos returned as if he had never been away.

Few clubs have no foreign players

Sheffield United are the only club in the top two divisions with a purely British and Irish squad.  Indeed, they do have two players from Ireland, both from the south.  Following Brexit, the Republic of Ireland will be in the EU and the UK won't, so even if the common travel area is maintained, it is difficult to see why it should not be counted as a foreign country.

Watford receive record fine for forgery

Watford have received a record fine of over £4m from the Football League for forgery.  The actual fine was £3.95m, but they also had to pay £350,000 in costs.   The fine would have been £5.75m if the club had not pleaded guilty and cooperated fully with the investigation.

Rampant Stags

Fans generally have many, often justified, criticisms of club owners so it's nice to see praise for a change.   At Mansfield Town's annual meeting Darren Shaw, representing Stags Fans United, credited finance director Jim Beachill for his steadfast work on the club's finances saying 'Fans really appreciate it.'  Dean Foulkes, chairman of the Stags Supporters Association was even more effusive: 'The finances are incredible, brilliant. People are so excited to support the club.'

Hatters must go up to compete

Luton Town vice-chairman David Wilkinson has said that the Hatters must go up this season if they are to continue to compete.   In his view the gap between the divisions is becoming greater.

Chairman Gao has no readies

Southampton fans have contacted me to express their concerns that their new Chinese owner, Chairman Gao, has no money to invest in the club having borrowed large sums to acquire it.   Given that from the perspective of now minority 'partner', Katharina Liebherr, the whole point of the takeover was to provide much needed investment, this has to be a concern.   Instead of going to the next level, the Saints may find it harder to stay at the present one.