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clement

It's about time this great game got re united

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(1) In the past the money spent went straight into the pockets of players and straight out of the game, the RFL are trying to keep money within the game as much as possible, the money spent on box ticking for a new stadium isn't money lost to the game but an investment in it.

(2) Money spent on developing young players is an investment in the games future.

(3)The P&R policy meant clubs spent everything they could on players wages, resulting an almost total lack of young talent coming through, this lack of talent meant clubs would look overseas for ready made players.

1. Spending on facilities is obviously a positive improvement, but ultimately clubs are still taking a gamble. The only difference being that hopefully they'll have something tangible to show for it if their pursuit of SL fails.

2. It is, yet is completely at odds with the RFL's latest position. Watch out in the next few weeks for a dictat coming from the RFL that is going to forbid Championship and Championship 1 clubs from running scholarship schemes !

3. Some clubs still do. Barrow spring to mind. It's not restricted to Championship clubs either.

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1. Spending on facilities is obviously a positive improvement, but ultimately clubs are still taking a gamble. The only difference being that hopefully they'll have something tangible to show for it if their pursuit of SL fails.

2. It is, yet is completely at odds with the RFL's latest position. Watch out in the next few weeks for a dictat coming from the RFL that is going to forbid Championship and Championship 1 clubs from running scholarship schemes !

3. Some clubs still do. Barrow spring to mind. It's not restricted to Championship clubs either.

On point 2 I will confess to not understanding the RFL's logic behind this move.

On point 3 as I said things will not change overnight or within one round of licenses, the trend is away from overseas players and that is what is important. As long as the trend is in the right direction arguments about speed of change are neither here nor there.

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It isn't the drop the causes the financial problem its the debt incurred to gain promotion and then to try and avoid relegation, usually that debt is beyond the means of the club. Demotion then makes the debt completely unservicable for a club with poor support to start with and then is reduced further when they drop.

Relegation doesn't damage clubs buying promotion followed by trying to buy survival does when clubs cannot afford it.

On Radio Manchester on thursday Chris Hamilton chairman of Oldham was talking about teams being promoted and was asked about a Yorkshire club who it was suggested would be promoted from Championship 1 to the Championship but it was pointed out had very poor crowds compared to other clubs. His reply showed how stupid some people within the game think. His reply was that, they think they'll be alright because they will get a lot more away supporters. That is no way to run a professional rugby club.

Spot on as always.

I think Hamilton can be excused "stupid" because I am sure that many NL club chairman feel it's a neccesity to never tell truths that may upset the fans like "If we won the NL we would not apply for SL as we can't afford Superleague". All NL chairman would be right on the basis of good marketing white lies to continue to talk about how their and other small clubs like them can one day make it.

I think facts are also conveniently forgotten in ideas like HKR making it in Superleague, or Salford or Huddersfield - after all did they actually make it in terms of good business operations or are they where they are because of Messrs Davey, Hudgell and Wilkinson.

It's fine by me if someone wants to put the millions in - I wish every RL clubs was backed by a multi-millionaire who's careless with his money, but the success of a heavily backed club can't be replicated by clubs who don't have that backing and again can anyone who dreams of their clubs promotion tell me that Barrow, Leigh, Halifax or Featherstone have that backing??

It has been said that Wakefield and Cas have made it in SL without the backing, but as we know they exist by spending well under the cap, and besides they are now both seriously under threat, and as for rich persons backing we know what that can end up in when the money runs out, and it could be running out at a few clubs over the next year. Hence Widnes are a shoe in due to having their rich backer - and this time they will be very welcome as on the second round of licensing there's a real risk that well over half the applications will come from clubs who cannot really hack the financial requirements of truly competing in SL.

So the logical question is is the financial and structural requirement of Superleague pitched too high??

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On a side note, its funny how nearly every time I hear someone say "great game" in connection with Rugby League, in the following sentence they talk about kicking expansion sides to the curb because nobody outside the heartlands is interested.

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Huddersfield Swinton up 74/75 down 75/76

Barrow Rochdale Leigh all up 75/76 down 76/77

Dewsbury Bramley Hunslet all up 76/77 all down 77/78

Barrow Rochdale Huddersfield all up 77/78 all down 78/79

Hunslet York Blackpool all up 79/80 all down 80/81

York Fulham Whitehaven all up 80/81 all down 81/82

Carlisle Workington Halifax all up 81/82 all down 82/83

Fulham Wakefield Salford Whitehaven all up 82/83 all down 83/84

Need I go on, this pattern has been repeated over and over again

Take a look carefully at those clubs and think about which teams have had financial troubles over the years.

Its pretty hilarious that you use seasons from the 1970's and early 1980's to highlight your point. Please get your Rothmans back out and examine the promotions and relegations from the season you chose to end your statistical spunkfest. You'll find that some clubs that were promoted went on to find relative success in the top flight, and even if relegated managed to make it back up within a season or two.

Personally, as a fan of a club that has NEVER played in the top flight of our sport, I'd much rather be a yo-yo club than be limited to the second echelon of the game for all eternity. Even if my club did fit most of the franchise criteria (i.e. number of seats, car parking, money in the bank, Academy set-up) the authorities would reject us on one of the more irrelevant boxes to be ticked, such as proximity to other Super League clubs, or even breast size of our cheerleaders.

As for looking at the clubs you have named and linking them with financial troubles, don't make me laugh. Practically every club in the game has encountered some kind of financial difficulty over the last 30 years. Even the mighty Leeds were nearly bankrupt in 1996, and flirted dangerously with relegtion thanks to a distinct lack of finance.

The real crux of the matter is that all those clubs you listed - the fans, the players, the directors etc - DESERVED their shot at the highest level, if only for a season - just as the fans, players and directors of Hunslet and Dewsbury deserved their chance in the big time in 1999 and 2001. Incidentally, Hunslet and Dewsbury were denied promotion BEFORE franchising was introduced, thanks to some ridiculous stipulation about plastic seats and car-parking spaces. Both Hunslet and Dewsbury put money into achieving promotion, and when denied the promotion they had earned went on to encounter financial problems. What a surprise. When you plough money into something to achieve a goal (reward) only to be denied it by some flimsy red tape, there's bound to be some sort of financial backlash when the carrot of success is removed.

Their ambition should have been rewarded with a place in Super League when promotion was achieved. How dare the RFL deny those clubs the chance to maybe realise their potential and have a season of glory in the top flight. Can you imagine the Premier League denying the likes of Blackpool, or Burnley, their rightful place in the top flight because they didn't fit a 'criteria'? There'd be absolute outrage, legal action and possible assassinations.

Rewarding achievement is one of the cornerstones of sport, and Rugby League has removed any reward for achievement by introducing franchising.

As a previous poster mentioned, parachute payments have pretty much ended the possibility of a relegated club encountering severe financial problems. When Leigh were promoted for the 2005 season, all the players they signed were on 1 year contracts, which allowed the club to get them off the books for the 2006 National League season and function as normal. So whats your problem?

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How is it a major argument against P&R when it doesn't exist anymore ? :blink:

becvaused it knacked workington and oldham big time when it did

andplenty of other clubs including workington pre sl, and the reason you gave was a major factor.

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becvaused it knacked workington and oldham big time when it did

andplenty of other clubs including workington pre sl, and the reason you gave was a major factor.

Yes, but it's been legislated against and mitigated now so I don't really see your point ?

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Yes, but it's been legislated against and mitigated now so I don't really see your point ?

the point is that the experiences and performances of clubs like Workington in SL and other clubs including workington Post SL is one of the reasons why Rugby League no longer has it in its premier competition.

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the point is that the experiences and performances of clubs like Workington in SL and other clubs including workington Post SL is one of the reasons why Rugby League no longer has it in its premier competition.

You don't honestly believe that franchising was introduced to save poor clubs like Workington, do you? It was introduced to prevent clubs like Workington entering the Super League, despite on-field achievements. If you've got a nice council-built legoland ground that looks good on the SKY cameras, or play in Wales or France, then you're in. If not, then no chance.

Do you really imagine that if my club, Batley, were suddenly taken over by a multi-millionaire, finished off our stand (giving us a 12'000 capacity), stuck some money in the bank, set up a thriving Academy and made a franchise bid (we already tick the crucial box of having won a trophy), we'd stand even a slim chance of consideration?

Take a couple of deep breaths and give me a really honest answer please.

The rigid concept of meeting the 'strict' franchise criteria before a Super League place is granted was exposed for the sham it is when Celtic Crusaders (who met very, very few of the criteria) were granted a franchise in 2008 ahead of Widnes Vikings, who's franchise application even back then blew the Welsh club out of the water.

The sneaky little clause which will allow Toulouse to apply (and, I've no doubt, win) for a 2012 franchise also confirms that the franchise system is a big crock of poop. It basically states that a club which doesn't meet even ONE of the criteria set out by the guidelines can apply for a Super League franchise providing it is based overseas and is invited by SL to apply for a place! So why do the 'criteria' apply to Championship clubs based in Britain, and not overseas clubs? Hmmm?

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So you see, the anger of Co-Op fans will impact the RFL and SL clubs

Co-op fans. I can never get near the bread aisle when they're in. Shouting 'You don't know what you're doing' at the old man from down the road, just 'cause he dropped a packet of custard creams on the floor. Shocking.

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Its pretty hilarious that you use seasons from the 1970's and early 1980's to highlight your point. Please get your Rothmans back out and examine the promotions and relegations from the season you chose to end your statistical spunkfest. You'll find that some clubs that were promoted went on to find relative success in the top flight, and even if relegated managed to make it back up within a season or two.

It isn't hilarious at all, it's bloody tragic. The list of clubs going up and down and finishing up in deep financial mire is a lot longer than those that have gone up, stayed up and not had financial problems.

Lets carry on from where I left off then.

Barrow Workington Hunslet up 83/84 down 84/85

Swinton York Dewsbury up 84/85 down 85/86

Barrow Wakefield up 85/86 down 86/87

Hunslet Swinton up 86/87 down 87/88

Oldham up 87/88 down 88/89

Leigh Barrow up 88/89 down 89/90

Rochdale Oldham up 88/89 down 89/90

Swinton up 90/91 down 91/92 bust

92/93 is the only season that a promoted club didn't go straight back down, also the year the league was split to 3 divisions.

Doncaster up 93/94 down & bust 94/95

At this point all change for SL.

Workington and Oldham both in the initial SL both brought to their knees trying to stay in. Down in 96 Workington and in 97 Oldham.

Huddersfield promoted in 97 bottom in 98 but stayed in due to no suitable promotion candidate, Hull promoted at the same time survive but hae massive financial probems. We all know the eventual fate of these two clubs.

Other teams have held on in there for a couple of seasons but finished with crippling debts when they finally succumbed to relegation.

I am sorry but the whole history of P&R is a history of clubs going straight up, straight down and straight into deep financial trouble.

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It isn't hilarious at all, it's bloody tragic. The list of clubs going up and down and finishing up in deep financial mire is a lot longer than those that have gone up, stayed up and not had financial problems.

Lets carry on from where I left off then.

Barrow Workington Hunslet up 83/84 down 84/85

Swinton York Dewsbury up 84/85 down 85/86

Barrow Wakefield up 85/86 down 86/87

Hunslet Swinton up 86/87 down 87/88

Oldham up 87/88 down 88/89

Leigh Barrow up 88/89 down 89/90

Rochdale Oldham up 88/89 down 89/90

Swinton up 90/91 down 91/92 bust

92/93 is the only season that a promoted club didn't go straight back down, also the year the league was split to 3 divisions.

Doncaster up 93/94 down & bust 94/95

At this point all change for SL.

Workington and Oldham both in the initial SL both brought to their knees trying to stay in. Down in 96 Workington and in 97 Oldham.

Huddersfield promoted in 97 bottom in 98 but stayed in due to no suitable promotion candidate, Hull promoted at the same time survive but hae massive financial probems. We all know the eventual fate of these two clubs.

Other teams have held on in there for a couple of seasons but finished with crippling debts when they finally succumbed to relegation.

I am sorry but the whole history of P&R is a history of clubs going straight up, straight down and straight into deep financial trouble.

What you should have said is :

'I am sorry but the whole history of P&R is a history of clubs going straight up, straight down, WITH A FEW straight into financial trouble.'

Lets tar all club chairman and directors as idiots and incompetents who following any promotion would definitely bankrupt their clubs.

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What you should have said is :

'I am sorry but the whole history of P&R is a history of clubs going straight up, straight down, WITH A FEW straight into financial trouble.'

Lets tar all club chairman and directors as idiots and incompetents who following any promotion would definitely bankrupt their clubs.

A FEW a chuffing FEW

Doncaster bust

Swinton bust

Widnes bust (trying to go up didn't even make it)

Halifax bust

Keighley bust (don't argue that was Lindsay's fault they were already in deep ****)

Leigh bust

Rochdale bust

Hunslet bust

Carlisle bust

York bust

That's not a full list either.

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You don't honestly believe that franchising was introduced to save poor clubs like Workington, do you? It was introduced to prevent clubs like Workington entering the Super League, despite on-field achievements. If you've got a nice council-built legoland ground that looks good on the SKY cameras, or play in Wales or France, then you're in. If not, then no chance.

Do you really imagine that if my club, Batley, were suddenly taken over by a multi-millionaire, finished off our stand (giving us a 12'000 capacity), stuck some money in the bank, set up a thriving Academy and made a franchise bid (we already tick the crucial box of having won a trophy), we'd stand even a slim chance of consideration?

Take a couple of deep breaths and give me a really honest answer please.

The rigid concept of meeting the 'strict' franchise criteria before a Super League place is granted was exposed for the sham it is when Celtic Crusaders (who met very, very few of the criteria) were granted a franchise in 2008 ahead of Widnes Vikings, who's franchise application even back then blew the Welsh club out of the water.

The sneaky little clause which will allow Toulouse to apply (and, I've no doubt, win) for a 2012 franchise also confirms that the franchise system is a big crock of poop. It basically states that a club which doesn't meet even ONE of the criteria set out by the guidelines can apply for a Super League franchise providing it is based overseas and is invited by SL to apply for a place! So why do the 'criteria' apply to Championship clubs based in Britain, and not overseas clubs? Hmmm?

are you suggesting I am dishonest?

I was answering Derwent's question at I think the third attempt

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As I said earlier.

Where P&R exists, look at Keighley, Doncaster ,Gateshead and Blackpool.

FFS, why can't folks see the wood for the trees.

P&R exists to S/L, but only making sure it isn't going to bankrupt a club being there, with a 3 year stabilising period added, and with the above 4 being very recent casualties, maybe some sort of checks should be made lower down the structure of semi-pro rugby.

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As I said earlier.

Where P&R exists, look at Keighley, Doncaster ,Gateshead and Blackpool.

FFS, why can't folks see the wood for the trees.

P&R exists to S/L, but only making sure it isn't going to bankrupt a club being there, with a 3 year stabilising period added, and with the above 4 being very recent casualties, maybe some sort of checks should be made lower down the structure of semi-pro rugby.

Hmmm but you could apply that to some current SL clubs too, so what would you do about them ?

How about a SL club that has had 18 CCJ's against it, the most recent one being in June this year when it couldn't afford a bill of just

Edited by Derwent

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I wish people would stop using Workington as an example in these arguments as their relegation was as the first sacrificial lamb on the alter of expansionism by the RFL. Had the RFL not assisted PSG so much to help them finish above Town then Town would have not been relegated and who knows what might have happened?

As it was they did get relegated with players on SL contracts which had to be met and in a lower league. Several players left and the performances in the lower league were poor and they dropped again into the third division and then went in to administration. The period in administration meant that they did not receive any money from the RFL from the Sky monies which only added to their predicament.

That scenario would not happen now for as Derwent states the problem has been legislated for regarding SL contracts.

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Hmmm but you could apply that to some current SL clubs too, so what would you do about them ?

How about a SL club that has had 18 CCJ's against it, the most recent one being in June this year when it couldn't afford a bill of just

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I wish people would stop using Workington as an example in these arguments as their relegation was as the first sacrificial lamb on the alter of expansionism by the RFL. Had the RFL not assisted PSG so much to help them finish above Town then Town would have not been relegated and who knows what might have happened?

As it was they did get relegated with players on SL contracts which had to be met and in a lower league. Several players left and the performances in the lower league were poor and they dropped again into the third division and then went in to administration. The period in administration meant that they did not receive any money from the RFL from the Sky monies which only added to their predicament.

That scenario would not happen now for as Derwent states the problem has been legislated for regarding SL contracts.

Yes things could have been oh so different if Workington had been given a three year period to stabalise in the original SL, as it was they weren't.

I'm a firm believer that expansion clubs should get a huge subsidy from the RFL, but the RFL get a seat on the board of the club so they know exactly what is going on.

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The final paragraph is the most telling in that report.

However, they aren't in admin , and still could be a viable club.

They could be, time will tell.

But it annoys me when people seem to think that it is only clubs below SL who have financial problems. There are many SL clubs who are carrying huge debts forward and sooner or later some of these are going to bite. I've said it before, some clubs are only a heart attack away from bankruptcy.

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Yes things could have been oh so different if Workington had been given a three year period to stabalise in the original SL, as it was they weren't.

We would have been happy with a fair chance to have a second season to see how we got on

I'm a firm believer that expansion clubs should get a huge subsidy from the RFL, but the RFL get a seat on the board of the club so they know exactly what is going on.

Which is what happened when Lindsay and Jepson became directors of PSG but even that could not save them 2 years later

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Yes things could have been oh so different if Workington had been given a three year period to stabalise in the original SL, as it was they weren't.

I'm a firm believer that expansion clubs should get a huge subsidy from the RFL, but the RFL get a seat on the board of the club so they know exactly what is going on.

Thats not what Keith was getting at, Town getting a fair shot at staying up was all we were after. What went on that season was nothing short of scandalous, Town had almost no chance of staying up and were then cast adrift.

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They could be, time will tell.

But it annoys me when people seem to think that it is only clubs below SL who have financial problems. There are many SL clubs who are carrying huge debts forward and sooner or later some of these are going to bite. I've said it before, some clubs are only a heart attack away from bankruptcy.

I don't think people think that its only championship clubs that have problems. The state of many clubs in SL is well known, the whole point is that a lot of financial problems stem from overspending either to gain promotion or in trying to stave off relegation. One of the ideas of licenses is to try and break the cycle that I have shown in my earlier posts.

Once again I reiterate some of us may not be around to see the success of this process, however without I personally am convinced that we will be around to see the game become a local novelty like Cumbrian Wrestling.

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Thats not what Keith was getting at, Town getting a fair shot at staying up was all we were after. What went on that season was nothing short of scandalous, Town had almost no chance of staying up and were then cast adrift.

I think that post of mine is misunderstood, I wasn't having a go at Keith, I was pointing out that I belive that given current conditions then they would have had a chance at fairing much better.

The whole point of these changes to how the game operates is to try and avoid a lot of this ****.

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I think that post of mine is misunderstood, I wasn't having a go at Keith, I was pointing out that I belive that given current conditions then they would have had a chance at fairing much better.

The whole point of these changes to how the game operates is to try and avoid a lot of this ****.

Fair enough, and for the record I think getting rid of relegation and the whole licensing thing was a great move by the powers that be. We cant judge it on one run through, we need to wait until its a few iterations old to see the results. The main thing I was hoping for was clubs near the bottom would stop signing over the hill Australians to try and stay up and allow their young players time to bed in without the fear of relegation.

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Rugby League World - April 2017

League Express - Mon 10th April 2017