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#21 audois

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 01:04 PM

France is the absolute key to the development of the game. Make France competitive again (and I mean again because they were in the past) then you have competitive World Cups, Aus v Fra, NZ v Fra, Eng v Fra test series and four nations. France maybe hosting a World Cup - Catalans and Toulouse (and maybe more) strengthening SL without any English players.
 
In 5-10 years Catalans v Toulouse matches could be drawing 10-20,000 and England v France could be a 3-game mid-season series. How is this possible? Well in 2005, France had 1-2 full-time professionals - now they have 20-25. The aim is to increase that pool to 50-100. It can't be done just by Catalans or Toulouse but if English SL clubs were losing lots of players to the NRL then France must be an obvious target to recruit.
 
France also needs a world class coach - and I mean world class to get every bit of talent performing to a high standard. We are talking Bellamy, Bennett, Sheens here not Agar, Goulding and Kear.

If we could get Toulouse in SL in 2015 & say Avignon five years later we would create 6 French derby fixtures. This would change the dynamics here instantaneously. Thats like one every six weeks. It would completely change everything. Stop people talking about an English SL per se. I hope to live the day to see a Toulouse-Catalan clash at the citys Municipal Stadium in front of 25,000.
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#22 Keith T

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 01:28 PM

I don't think that current way of thinking of growing from the top down works.    Giving the large majority of the UK game's income to only 14 clubs (soon to be 12!!) alienates quite a large chunk of the games support area.    Things grow from the bottom up and if we don't feed the grassroots then the main plant will not grow.


I remember when .............................

"It is impossible not to feel a twinge of sympathy for Workington Town, the fall guys this season for the Super League's determination to retain it's European dimension, in the shape of Paris. While the French have had every assistance to survive, the importance of having a flagship in a heartland area like West Cumbria has been conveniently forgotten." - Dave Hadfield - Independent 25th August 1996.


#23 l'angelo mysterioso

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 02:00 PM

I don't think that current way of thinking of growing from the top down works. Giving the large majority of the UK game's income to only 14 clubs (soon to be 12!!) alienates quite a large chunk of the games support area. Things grow from the bottom up and if we don't feed the grassroots then the main plant will not grow.

Are the two mutually exclusive?
The current composition of championship one would suggest not
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#24 Keith T

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 02:07 PM

Are the two mutually exclusive?
The current composition of championship one would suggest not

 

But the clubs in Championship 1, especially the new ones, are struggling with crowds of 150 - 200.    Surely it is these clubs that need the funding to help them grow not Leeds, Wigan, etc.


I remember when .............................

"It is impossible not to feel a twinge of sympathy for Workington Town, the fall guys this season for the Super League's determination to retain it's European dimension, in the shape of Paris. While the French have had every assistance to survive, the importance of having a flagship in a heartland area like West Cumbria has been conveniently forgotten." - Dave Hadfield - Independent 25th August 1996.


#25 nadera78

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 02:10 PM

But the clubs in Championship 1, especially the new ones, are struggling with crowds of 150 - 200.    Surely it is these clubs that need the funding to help them grow not Leeds, Wigan, etc.

But it's Leeds, Wigan, etc that generate the funds needed to help those clubs grow. Everything we do stems from having a successful top tier.


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#26 Keith T

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 02:16 PM

But it's Leeds, Wigan, etc that generate the funds needed to help those clubs grow. Everything we do stems from having a successful top tier.

 

Sky would still contribute their millions to the game in the same way as they do now even if Leeds, Wigan, etc, were to take large cuts in what they receive from those millions.    This would also have the knock-on effect of maybe not bringing in Antipodeans on a pension plan so much and make more SL clubs develop and use their own local players.


I remember when .............................

"It is impossible not to feel a twinge of sympathy for Workington Town, the fall guys this season for the Super League's determination to retain it's European dimension, in the shape of Paris. While the French have had every assistance to survive, the importance of having a flagship in a heartland area like West Cumbria has been conveniently forgotten." - Dave Hadfield - Independent 25th August 1996.


#27 l'angelo mysterioso

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 02:25 PM

But the clubs in Championship 1, especially the new ones, are struggling with crowds of 150 - 200. Surely it is these clubs that need the funding to help them grow not Leeds, Wigan, etc.


How do you know they are struggling?
Don't they get funding? They have only been in the comp a season I'm sure they will have budgeted carefully

I just don't see why we can't maintain an elite and have growth from the bottom as well. The new champ 1 clubs seem to be doing ok.

back tio the topic
I'd be disappointed and disturbed if another club from the Wakefield met area made it into sl and narrowed the sports horizons further geographically and culturally, especially if it meant Toulouse didn't get the gig

I'd like to see more middle class people enjoying the rugby league and some upper class people as well we lag well behind union in the broadness of our class base...a bad thing all round

If like to see more people enjoying the game rather than whingeing about perceived injustices

And a load if other stuff
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#28 Saint Toppy

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 02:37 PM

Immediate - complete restructure at Red Hall. Clear out the underperforming staff and bring in people with the skills & knowledge required to take the game forward.

 

Short term - Build on what we have rather than try to expand into new areas. First we need major financial backing of the sport with large blue chip sponsorship deals. Have the RFL work with all the clubs to ensure we have a solid and well run base from amateur through to SL.

 

Medium Term - Build up the number of existing clubs who are capable of competing at the top level and start to expand the game beyond the traditional heartlands. All the clubs should become profitable & self supporting with a target turnover exceeding £10M PA.

 

Long Term - Have 24 SL standard clubs and split them into and eastern & western division of 12 each. RFL to build their own stadium.



#29 The Parksider

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 02:40 PM

I don't think that current way of thinking of growing from the top down works.    Giving the large majority of the UK game's income to only 14 clubs (soon to be 12!!) alienates quite a large chunk of the games support area.    Things grow from the bottom up and if we don't feed the grassroots then the main plant will not grow.

 

I'm afraid the championship clubs from the bottom up have lost well over 50% of their crowds over the 17 years of Superleague.

 

The failing SL clubs still have better crowds than when they started in SL

 

The top Superleague clubs have relatively high growth figures for their crowds up to 50% in some cases.

 

Plus nobody has grown from the bottom up into a superleague club.

 

In new areas oxford are the highest climbing club returning a 350 crowds the other week.

 

Growth comes from investment and there's little of that at the bottom.



#30 Keith T

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 03:26 PM

 

 

Growth comes from investment and there's little of that at the bottom.

 

Which is exactly what I was saying, is it not?    Cut the funding to the top clubs by several hundred thousand and looking after the bottom clubs seems eminently more sensible to me than keeping 12 clubs well heeled and forget the rest.


I remember when .............................

"It is impossible not to feel a twinge of sympathy for Workington Town, the fall guys this season for the Super League's determination to retain it's European dimension, in the shape of Paris. While the French have had every assistance to survive, the importance of having a flagship in a heartland area like West Cumbria has been conveniently forgotten." - Dave Hadfield - Independent 25th August 1996.


#31 The Parksider

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 03:35 PM

Which is exactly what I was saying, is it not?    Cut the funding to the top clubs by several hundred thousand and looking after the bottom clubs seems eminently more sensible to me than keeping 12 clubs well heeled and forget the rest.

The crowd growth is at the top because people like to watch top class winning Rugby League.

Every £100 spent on marketing Wigan or Leeds has a much better return than marketing Oldham or Rochdale.The SKY contract does not allow funding to be cut from SL and given to the Championships.A lot of the investment that has grown the top clubs is private investment also, and I guess those rich fellows will not be giving to the small clubs either.

The largest number of young pros are born in Superleague areas so the top clubs grow the player pool the most as well.

Top down works as the figures show, bottom up shows mainly serious decline as you go down the leagues, at the bottom there's stagnation like Skolars or Gateshead.

We can only go forward by recognising where the growth is and how it has really come about. No small club has grown into a Superleague contender in 17 years of the modern game, and there's sadly no prospect of it.

Edited by The Parksider, 21 June 2013 - 03:36 PM.


#32 Northern Sol

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 03:46 PM

Very many NFP / NL1 / CC sides have joined SL. Why pretend otherwise?



#33 Keith T

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 04:16 PM

Stagnation occurs at all levels of the game with some clubs but we shouldn't generalise otherwise we wouldn't do anything.    Does every club have to be looked at as a failure because they don't grow big enough to make SL?    Only 12 clubs are going to be given that privilege in the near future so if we look at the future of the game as only concerning those 12 then the game has no future.

 

If we are to expand then we need to ensure sufficient funding to the areas outside of the M62 corridor where the biggest majority of the RFL's income is wasted.    The new clubs in Championship 1 get assistance with travelling costs I believe which is one way of helping them along but clubs up in Cumbria get no such help and it can cost quite a substantial amount over a season for transport alone.    This prevents the clubs running Under 20's etc because of the cost.   £100k extra for such clubs could see them being able afford to run junior teams and help to increase the pool of players that may eventually end up in SL, and not all SL areas develop lots of SL quality players.


I remember when .............................

"It is impossible not to feel a twinge of sympathy for Workington Town, the fall guys this season for the Super League's determination to retain it's European dimension, in the shape of Paris. While the French have had every assistance to survive, the importance of having a flagship in a heartland area like West Cumbria has been conveniently forgotten." - Dave Hadfield - Independent 25th August 1996.


#34 The Parksider

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 09:14 PM

Does every club have to be looked at as a failure because they don't grow big enough to make SL?    Only 12 clubs are going to be given that privilege in the near future so if we look at the future of the game as only concerning those 12 then the game has no future.

 

It's not me who is championing small championship sides with insufficient resources to have a chance in SL, and it's not me who is going round saying that RL can grow from the bottom up, and CC1 clubs are heading for Superleague.

 

No club is a "failure" because they can never be SL clubs without heavy investment, all our clubs are heroic.

 

But if we have this myth that clubs can grow all the way to Superleague from the bottom/roots up that premise sets them up to fail miserably.

 

As for "just" 12 clubs not giving the game a future, again look at how things have unfolded in reality, it's the big Superleague clubs that have provided the entertainment to TV audiences to secure the games £90,000,000 lifeline.

 

If anything about eight SL clubs have ensured the game has a future.



#35 Jonty

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 11:51 PM

Do you think that vision will help it grow? If so, how?
Do you think growth is needed or wanted anyway?

 

1. Yes - a combination of short, medium and long-term strategic planning is needed. Where does RL see itself in a generation? Often we don't know where it sees itself in six months.

2. Absolutely to being needed. With regard to wanted, there is a sizeable body of opinion in the game that probably thinks that this "isn't for the likes of us". Rugby league is a broad church. Be prepared to compromise, but keep an eye on the strategic goals.

 

So, in one sentence, what does this look like by 2025?

 

A thriving international calendar that is pencilled out a decade in advance, underpinned by sustainable and ambitious grassroots investment programme that grows the talent pool in the Home Nations, Ireland and France as a priority, with an aspirational world class European top-tier of clubs, supported by an excellent youth programme from 16-21 years of age that offers a professional youth playing environment across Europe, and particularly in areas where the game is established.

 

I'll add more once I've had time to jot down the detail...


disques vogue

The club where Eurovision isn't a dirty word. A waltz through the leopard skin lined world of Tom Jones, Bert Kampfert and Burt Bacharach. Step out to the sound of the happy hammond and swing to the seductive sounds of the samba.

DJ's, raffles, cocktails and wide collars. Please dress smart. Gentlemen might like to wear a suit.

Same price. Same music. Same rubbish prizes.

#36 walter sobchak

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 07:52 AM

Domestically I'd like to see a settled format of the league structures, where the likes of Hemel, Oldham, Whitehaven etc aren't denied a shot at the big time playing in the top tier(whatever that may be) and sticking to it. Internationally I'd like to see a concentrated effort from the likes of the English, NZ and Australian governing bodies into making France a genuine 4th world power playing rugby league nation. With an annual France v England test in France, French national and juniors sides touring to Australia and NZ and hosting tours from said countries .

#37 l'angelo mysterioso

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 07:53 AM

1. Yes - a combination of short, medium and long-term strategic planning is needed. Where does RL see itself in a generation? Often we don't know where it sees itself in six months.
2. Absolutely to being needed. With regard to wanted, there is a sizeable body of opinion in the game that probably thinks that this "isn't for the likes of us". Rugby league is a broad church. Be prepared to compromise, but keep an eye on the strategic goals.

So, in one sentence, what does this look like by 2025?

A thriving international calendar that is pencilled out a decade in advance, underpinned by sustainable and ambitious grassroots investment programme that grows the talent pool in the Home Nations, Ireland and France as a priority, with an aspirational world class European top-tier of clubs, supported by an excellent youth programme from 16-21 years of age that offers a professional youth playing environment across Europe, and particularly in areas where the game is established.

I'll add more once I've had time to jot down the detail...

What a brilliant post
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#38 The Parksider

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 09:01 AM

1. Within reason what is your vision for the game?

2. Do you think that vision will help it grow? If so, how?

 

3. Do you think growth is needed or wanted anyway?

 

1. A game that fits the bill as announced by League Express in 1996, one that presents at the top as a modern, professional, exciting sport, that can secure life saving TV contracts to attract the modern man/woman and their kids. Below that a game that present as a series of clubs in as many places as possible who are there for the love of the game, and there to facilitate it for everyone. Leeds Akkies rule.

 

2. Yes if the attitude is we love the game and we love the flagship that inspires so many more people to watch it and take it up, and inspires broadcasters to talk it up.

 

3. Growth is needed in all businesses but your phrase "within reason" is telling.

 

We can reasonably expect SL to grow if we sort out the right format and target the funding properly.

 

If SL gets better from top to bottom we can reasonably expect new generations of Rugby people to carry on choosing league over union where they can find the amateur clubs to go to, or find th support to set clubs up themselves.

 

As you know it's the heavily declining bit in the middle that is the problem.



#39 Jonty

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 10:29 PM

Some ideas

 

INTERNATIONAL

1. The Rugby League World Cup

- Tournaments penciled in for 2017 (SH), 2021 (NH) and 2025 (SH). Acceptance of the fact that Australia and England are the only realistic host nations at this time, but that fixtures are encouraged to be played in other adjacent countries. Aspiration for a return to a 16 team event from 2017.

 

2. Other internationals

- A calendar penciled in until RLWC 2025

- Four nations - bi-annual international series  (2014, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24); ambition to expand to five/six nations; opportunity for all 6 nations to host a mini-tournament.

- Test series; It's a cliche, but bring back tours every four years. Not just for GB, but for other nations too. Get it in a cycle like the RU Lions. GB will only, likely, play Australia in a series once every 12 years or so. It becomes an event. 2015 - GB to Aus; Fra to NZ; Pacific Cup for PNG, Samoa etc. 2019 - GB to NZ; PNG to Fra, Aus to Pacific Islands etc.

- Commonwealth Youth Games - Recognised as the U18s flagship competition 2015 Samoa; 2017 St Lucia; 2021 Brunei; 2025 Zambia

 

3. Hosting

- Put major events out to tender

 

TALENT

1. Investment in high quality youth competition across the pro game in a youth age banding (U18-U21 range). Equal funding available to all clubs awarded by application process to a licenced National Academy league structure.

2. Increase the England, Home Nations and Ireland talent pools. Support to the FFR13 to build the French talent pool

3. Meaningful international calendar (above)

4. Origin at youth level (based on county divisions)

 

GRASSROOTS

1. Focus on Sport England's 14-25 priority age bands; make strong areas stronger at 13s

2. Develop an ambitious satellite clubs programme that acts as a tool to develop the game in emerging districts and "challenging" heartlands areas. Think outside the box. Why not launch 6 v 6 as a tool for expansion at yr 7 upwards?

3. Push for reform of Sport England's Active People Survey, the current measurement system that is widely thought of as flawed. Work in partnership with other sports to achieve this and raise the credibility of RL as a sport that can bargain at the top table

4. Go back to Sport England in 2015 for an increase in investment based upon successes in the first two years of the cycle.

5. Work with other partners, such as StreetGames and Youth Sport Trust to get RL played in schools and as a doorstep sport

6. Invest in Student RL - not just via BUCS teams, but into the Old Boys network.

7. Invest in Her Rugby League

8. Develop a leadership academy programme for young people at 14-16 linked with schools and clubs

9. Work with College SportMakers to run a leadership academy in FE. Deploy such leaders in running grassroots activities at younger age groups, building local and club capacity

 

CHALLENGE CUP

1. New overseas quota rule applied to SL and Championship clubs to give parity and increase chances of an upset (nb. is this legal?)

 

PRO GAME

1. Tiered structure of central funding that rewards clubs that are prepared to help the RFL achieve it's Sport England and international objectives (eg. youth, community etc.)

2. SL remains as a "European" licensed competition, but with greater transparency with regard to P&R and minimum standards

3. Standards driven Championships

4. Standards driven conferences

5. Ringfenced central funding for marketing and commercial posts in clubs (in line with minimum standards)

6. Introduction of a "European Cup" for highest ranked English (4 places), French (3 places) and Welsh sides (1 place) outside Super League

 

PROFILE

1. Move the RFL to Media City

2. Maintain a media/commercial presence in London

 

LONDON

1. Treat London Broncos like any other - if they don't get in by application, they're in the Championship.

2. Centrally fund youth rugby league at the top level in London to feed the London/southern pro game

 

HOME NATIONS AND IRELAND

1. RFL to fund the operational costs of the Home Nations and Ireland, and act as an arms-length benefactor, whilst helping them to nurture their relationship withe their respective national sports councils.

2. Assist with growth of the international game in the Home Nations and Ireland


Edited by Jonty, 23 June 2013 - 10:35 PM.

disques vogue

The club where Eurovision isn't a dirty word. A waltz through the leopard skin lined world of Tom Jones, Bert Kampfert and Burt Bacharach. Step out to the sound of the happy hammond and swing to the seductive sounds of the samba.

DJ's, raffles, cocktails and wide collars. Please dress smart. Gentlemen might like to wear a suit.

Same price. Same music. Same rubbish prizes.

#40 amh

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 06:18 AM

Excellent Jonty

 

I have always promoted protection for London, but I'm afraid it's time to move on. I like the origin at youth level, in fact all your ideas for strengthening through school age upwards. The international ideas are great, suggested before individually, but you're right they need to be penciled in with conviction instead of just being talked about every year.

 

As with anything, funding is the issue, and I suppose until we get Sport England and others to invest more, and sponsors to sit up and come aboard, removing prop ups from clubs that don't achieve the standards, will free up some funds for investment in the right areas for future growth.


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