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Ben Hayes - Charlton Athletic programme

The Championship

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Decision on QPR fine near

A decision is at last near on whether QPR breached financial fair play regulations in winning promotion to the Premier League three years ago.   The dispute with the Football League will be heard by an arbitration panel made up of three QCs at a hearing next week.

Attendances up in Football League

More than 18 million people attended Football League games this season, the highest number for almost 60 years.   Sky Bet Championship attendances surpassed the 11 million mark, with average crowds over 20,000.  

Innovative marketing

Huddersfield Town have come up with an innovative marketing idea, offering fans a pre-paid funeral package.  It includes a coffin in the club's colours and bearing its crest, or with a home shirt and name on the back. A blue and white floral bouquet is provided with a condolence card from the club.   The club song is played at the funeral.

Forest set for takeover

Regardless of the results of today's games Greek shipping magnate and former Olympiacos owner Evangelos Mariankis is set to complete his takeover of Nottingham Forest.   This will end the controversial five year reign of Kuwaiti businessman Fawaz al-Hawasi who has managed to get through eight managers.  Let's hope it's not a case of out of the frying pan into the fire.

Big financial challenges for Sunderland

Sunderland face big financial challenges following their relegation to the Championship.  Their latest accounts to July 2016 show a loss of £33m up from £26.6m.   Only Chelsea and Aston Villa had higher losses and they had exceptional items in their accounts.

Leeds buy out deal near

Leeds United co-owner Andrea Radrizzani is negotiating to buy out the 50 per cent share of the club held by Massimo Cellino.  He had an option to buy the shares at the end of the season.

Cellino has been a controversial figure at Elland Road and has been the subject of various bans by the football authorities.   His replacement would give the club some much needed stability.

Question marks over would be Reading purchasers

The Chinese Dai family that are behind a proposed takeover of Reading were previously subject to a Premier League investigation that raised 'red flags' about their commercial background.   This happened when they made an earlier bid for Hull City.

Their most high profile investment is based on transforming unused air raid shleters in China into shopping malls.   They have to be vacated if war ever breaks out.   This raises the bizarre spectacle of people sheltering amid displays of luxury western goods.

Reading takeover near

The acquisition of a 75 per cent stake in Reading by Chinese duo Dai Yongge and Dai Xiu Li appears to be closer.   They were involved in an unsuccessful bid for Hull City.  This week Lady Sasima Srivikorn, part of the Thai consortium that owns the club, said that running the club had become 'too costly'.

This was met with scorn by some Reading fans, given that majority shareholding Narin Niruttinanon has a bank balance of over £400m.

Chinese investors interested in Brentford

Chinese investors are interested in Brentford.   The club recently reported losses of £7.5m and there are question marks about how long owner and fan Matthew Benham can carry on pumping in £15m a year.

The International Investor Group already has a 80 per cent stake in Ligue 1 Nice.  A key figure in the group is Chien Lee, chief executive officer of NewCity Capital, a private investment company that focuses on the hospitality industry.

Four clubs in danger of folding

Four English Football League clubs are in danger of going out of business, says a study by financial experts.