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Belles In Distress

Doncaster Belles, the oldest club in the Women's Premier League, are on the verge of bankruptcy. The club's future is in jeopardy after it lost a major sponsor and it may be forced to close within days. The club may have to shut down after Sunday's match with Arsenal if some funding cannot be found. At the moment the club can't even pay for the coach down to Arsenal which would cost £500. The Belle's annual budget is just £65,000. Doncaster Council and Doncaster Rovers have offered to help out, but their money won't be available until the end of the month.

Two Newspapers Banned from Hartlepool United

The Northern Echo's and the Hartlepool Mail have been banned from the Victoria Park ground as Hartlepool United is in dispute with the newspapers over commercial rights. The row was sparked when the Hartlepool Mail refused to sign a commercial agreement with the club which the newspaper considered to be unfair. The Mail's photographers are not allowed into the stadium, and reporters, who are denied press access (although they have been reporting from the terraces).

Brazil is Leading Exporter of Foreign Players

The third annual review of the European Football Players' Labour Market published by the Professional Football Players Observatory shows that the percentage of foreign players with clubs in the top flight of each of the five main European leagues (England, France, Germany, Italy and Spain) continues to increase. The number of Latin Americans among the foreign players rose by 2 per cent against players from other parts of the world. Non-European players now represent 50 per cent of the total number of foreign players.

Smaller Premiership With No Relegation Urged

Manchester City executive chairman Gary Cook believes that the Premiership remains too parochial in its outlook and the future lies in an elite league of perhaps 14 clubs with no relegation. Cook commented, 'We are getting into a situation where there are maybe ten clubs. Do Saudi Arabians want to buy - and no disrespect to these clubs - Stoke City or Derby County? Or do they want to buy Newcastle United, Aston Villa, Manchester United, Manchester City?' Cook's model is the NFL in American football, but English fans are used to promotion and relegation.

Cork City's Money Problems Rock Eircom League

Cork City has become the latest Eircom League of Ireland club to face financial problems. In a season that has already seen Cobh Rangers, Sligo Rovers, Galway United and Kildrae County facing serious problems, the situation at Cork is worrying for the League of Ireland as a whole. Cork City is one of the biggest and best supported teams in the league, so its fate will be a warning for the rest of the clubs, that no team is safe from financial difficulties. 'It's hard to understand, I can't get my head around it,' admitted Fran Gavin, director of the Eircom League.

Top 10 Brazilian Football Clubs

We've recently received the latest report from Casual Auditores Independentes on the finances of Brazilian football clubs and very interesting reading it is too. 21 clubs are covered and we encourage you to check out it out - the link above is to a pdf copy. You will see a very thorough analysis including breakdowns of revenue streams and a special focus on EBITDA and financial liabilities, but here are some brief highlights:

South Australia's Oldest Football Club in Trouble

South Australia's oldest football club, Port Adelaide, is in trouble. Port is said to be headed towards a massive operating loss this season - perhaps more than A$500,000. Club finances, even in an era of the AFL being underwritten by media deals, in particular from television, are still heavily reliant in membership and crowd figures. Port have arrested the slide on membership, but its attendances are falling - and, with an average of 24.410 this season, are at a record low. After rising from 12th to second last year, the Power has fallen to 14th with just five wins from 19 games.

Troubled Times For Toffees

Everton have put a brave face on the fact that the Government have 'called in' their plans for a new stadium in Kirkby. Tesco have reaffirmed their support for the scheme, but at best it means a delay and at worst the decision of the local council could be overturned. The costs of the project will certainly increase. There has been some criticism of the club for not having a Plan B, given that there is no feasible way of turning Goodison Park into a modern stadium. Walton Hall Park has been suggested as one site, as has the other end of Stanley Park from Liverpool's new stadium.

Everton For Sale To Right Buyer

Bill Kenwright has said he is prepared to leave Goodison Park if he can find wealthy investors who can turn the team into title contenders. Theatre impressario Kenwright has been chairman of Everton for the past eight years but does not have the funds to help the club break into the top four. Russian, American and Dutch investors have expressed an interest in buying the club and Kenwright has turned to one of his friends, Sir Philip Green, the billionaire retail entrepreneur who is the seventh-richest man in Britain, for advice.

Rotherham United could be barred from the Football League

Miller's League Place in Doubt - Rotherham United could be barred from the Football League and unable to start the new season if they are unable to provide assurances over their future.  The Football League has written to the League Two club requesting an urgent meting to clear up issues that will affect their league membership, with their tenancy at the Don Valley Stadium a key issue.  In a letter to the Millers, the Football League wrote: 'It is imperative that the new company's pplication is presented to the board prior to the start of the season and it is in the best possible