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flyingking

Toulouse think they will hear about Superleague decision soon

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I think much of it is them saying in that article that if they get a "yes" then they'll invest whereas the current Championship clubs have to get their affairs in order first.

They have always said that Superleague will attract the local government funding and the big industrial sponsors.

Of course there's a chance that their plans may not come to fruition. How that translates into a risk I don't know?

If the money doesn't appear they can collapse or stagnate just like many M62 clubs have done.

Whose a better risk than Toulouse???

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Welcome to the board but I don't welcome you singling out Crusaders.

How about the license given to Bradford Bulls??

How about the license given to Castleford??

These clubs didn't have the resources to compete yet got a licence, so why do Toulouse have to pass a much sterner test??

Is it cos they is French?

Bulls and Cas are still playing RL at their home ground. Which part of Bridgend are Crusaders playing at these days? How many Welsh qualified SL players are they developing these days?

 

The obvious point to anyone with common sense is that Bradford and Cas are known entities. We know how well they stand up as SL clubs. Toulouse is something new, potentially a lot better but also potentially much worse.

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They have always said that Superleague will attract the local government funding and the big industrial sponsors.

Of course there's a chance that their plans may not come to fruition. How that translates into a risk I don't know?

If the money doesn't appear they can collapse or stagnate just like many M62 clubs have done.

Whose a better risk than Toulouse???

Do they have letters of promise, or even statements of intent, from the government agencies or industrial sponsors that if they get into SL that the money will be forthcoming?  Without that, it's just marketing fluff that's worth nothing.  At least there are proven examples of Championship clubs making efforts and investing money to reach minimum SL standards.

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Is it cos they is French?

Just to be clear, it certainly should be. The RFL have a responsibility to their members, which includes all the clubs you mentioned but not Toulouse. If a team meets the criteria for a licence or place then the decision to deny it to them needs be rigorous. So absolutely the requirements should be different, and an FFRXIII member have to pass stern tests, to justify their entry in an RFL sanctioned competition ahead of its own members.

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The Parksider, on 06 Jun 2013 - 15:26, said:

Welcome to the board but I don't welcome you singling out Crusaders.

How about the license given to Bradford Bulls??

How about the license given to Castleford??

These clubs didn't have the resources to compete yet got a licence, so why do Toulouse have to pass a much sterner test??

Is it cos they is French?

In reference to your comment, the nationality of the team has nothing to do with my comment. My belief is that the credibility of the competition is generally underminded by the poor governance structures in place at the RFL.

How a club can be included in a licensing process and then suddenly removed at the last minute is nothing short of shambolic (in the case of Crusaders). Forget the detail of how it came about, what perception does this create externally of our beloved game ?

I am particularly supportive of expansion of the game if it is done in a carefully considered manner, given the RFL's various failed ventures (Catalans excepted), the due diligence process needs to be sterner than what we have had previously because of this - not because they are French.

If they have the backers, sponsors... bring it on and hopefully it brings with it increased exposure for the game and perhaps in the longer term a stronger French National Team !

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Just to be clear, it certainly should be. The RFL have a responsibility to their members, which includes all the clubs you mentioned but not Toulouse. If a team meets the criteria for a licence or place then the decision to deny it to them needs be rigorous. So absolutely the requirements should be different, and an FFRXIII member have to pass stern tests, to justify their entry in an RFL sanctioned competition ahead of its own members.

 

You are correct and this highlights an issue I have raised in the past. The RFL should not be stakeholders in the SL. The RFL need to be severely downsized and its only responsibilities should be for grass roots development and the national team.

 

An independent body should be governing the SL and looking after the sports finances from top to bottom and making decisions on the growth of the professional competition in the UK and Europe.

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I've always been in favour of the Toulouse option but things of course need to be right. The French game needs a rivalry and 2 clubs would increase the pot internationally. Our best bet for regular competition internationally is easily France.

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You are correct and this highlights an issue I have raised in the past. The RFL should not be stakeholders in the SL. The RFL need to be severely downsized and its only responsibilities should be for grass roots development and the national team.

 

An independent body should be governing the SL and looking after the sports finances from top to bottom and making decisions on the growth of the professional competition in the UK and Europe.

A big old gap from SL to the grassroots...  We've already seen how dodgy effective administration can be you have two competing governing bodies.

 

It's a common fallacy I see from many RL supporters, it's SL only and anything below SL is just a rumour that they don't really believe exists.

For the budget they have, the RFL do a fantastic job.  Just think how good they'd be with a budget that the FA, RFU, LTA or ECB use.  Also, what makes the RFL not independent?

 

Finally, if SL were allowed to make their own choices about things then we'd get the situation we have with Australia where international development is a severe and unwelcome nuisance that just gets in the way of making clubs do as they see fit.

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Do they have letters of promise, or even statements of intent, from the government agencies or industrial sponsors that if they get into SL that the money will be forthcoming?  Without that, it's just marketing fluff that's worth nothing.  At least there are proven examples of Championship clubs making efforts and investing money to reach minimum SL standards.

 

Spot on. Make them prove they have these resources guaranteed. If they do, then i would let them in and ditch the worst SL club, either London or Cas.

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You are correct and this highlights an issue I have raised in the past. The RFL should not be stakeholders in the SL. The RFL need to be severely downsized and its only responsibilities should be for grass roots development and the national team.

 

An independent body should be governing the SL and looking after the sports finances from top to bottom and making decisions on the growth of the professional competition in the UK and Europe.

 

And who will be responsible for the Championships ?

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1. Do they have letters of promise, or even statements of intent, from the government agencies or industrial sponsors that if they get into SL that the money will be forthcoming? 

2. At least there are proven examples of Championship clubs making efforts and investing money to reach minimum SL standards.

1. Did Bradford, Wakefield or Salford have such proof of funds?

2. Investing every last penny to get to the starting gate only. After that as you said they need to turnover £3.2M to just stay on the SL ladder. Will they have to have letters of promise and statements of intent for the extra £1,000,000 a season they'll need?

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1. Did Bradford, Wakefield or Salford have such proof of funds?

2. Investing every last penny to get to the starting gate only. After that as you said they need to turnover £3.2M to just stay on the SL ladder. Will they have to have letters of promise and statements of intent for the extra £1,000,000 a season they'll need?

1.  They already had stadia that met the grade.  They already had SL grade players.  They already had proof of income to meet the licensing criteria.  They were awarded Super League licenses after having met the minimum standards, and exceeded them in many criteria.  Why not include Catalans in your point, they only achieved a C license as well?  Huddersfield, C license.  Cas, C license.  Bradford achieved a B.

 

2.  The licensing criteria are there for a reason, as long as they meet them at the time of application then they compete against the established names for a place, there are a few SL sides who would be very nervous if a couple of Championship sides achieved enough for a C grade license.  No-one expects a newly promoted side to succeed immediately but the criteria are there to ensure that they at least have a good chance of doing so.  Even if the Championship sides invest the money and don't get in, they're providing an extra level of professionalism to their club that can only enhance the Championship itself.

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1. Did Bradford, Wakefield or Salford have such proof of funds?

 

No, but they had evidence of how high their turnover was likely to be. Nobody really knows how much Toulouse will turn over. Hence the need for proof of funds.

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Finally, if SL were allowed to make their own choices about things then we'd get the situation we have with Australia where international development is a severe and unwelcome nuisance that just gets in the way of making clubs do as they see fit.

 

 

 

In the past this was the case because the game was owned by a massive global media empire who drip fed the game as little at it had to much like it is doing to the SL now just to survive.

 

The commission is running the game now and in the first 6 months of doing so, they managed to put on a Samoa v Tonga game, something the previous owners/admin had no intention of ever doing.  There has been more international talk from the ARLC in the last 6 months alone than the entire time the News Limited lot ran the game (nearly 2 decades). (well outside of running the international game down or just plain lying in some articles when they bothered to mention it)

 

Good luck to Toulouse, I hope they thrive and for goodness sake, get the structures right for RL in England, and stick with it.

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Why not include Catalans in your point, they only achieved a C license as well?

I have the summary in front of me.

"Catalans are a club with a clear vision on how to develop their commercial business, by the end of the current license they will have their current facility increasing turnover and improving their player development system. The clubs governance model is strong and it has aggressive plans to grow turnover in the coming years".

The club were awarded a "B" license and as far as I can see they are on their way to an "A".

It seems to me that the benefits of having Catalans in the Superleague are immense compared to the benefit of replacing them with a small town club in the north of England, but that is what a number of people on here would like to do.

They give an international dimension to Superleague and hopefully in time will return a competitive International dimension to RL in the northern hempisphere. What price would you put on our badly struggling game the 9,000 fans, the growing turnover, the increasing number of French quality players?

What price would you put on Toulouse being able to do the same and double that benefit?

I think Richard Lewis was a good leader of the game and did his best before the realities of our games difficulties clicked in. He didn't mess about, he put Catalans in and shunted out two clubs to make way for them. At that time Catalans could prove little through jumping licensing hoops which didn't exist.

It's beyond me why we all rail against a licensing system that we see as a sham, then when it come to Toulouse we want to have the licensing system applied to them over rigidly to the point we may be looking a gift horse in the mouth.

Yes I know that they may fail, but if that is a crime then maybe the many failures M62 clubs have regularly supplied, and the way in which Hudgell. Fulton and O'Connor all accepted licenses with glee then stopped putting the money in one year on should be taken into account? Would it be OK for Toulouse to just get a rich director to promise to bankroll them then he can "step down" later??

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There has been more international talk from the ARLC in the last 6 months alone than the entire time the News Limited lot ran the game (nearly 2 decades). (well outside of running the international game down or just plain lying in some articles when they bothered to mention it)

I really really hope they follow through with this in the long term. The potential for Rugby League in the Pacific nations is immense, and any development will be mutually beneficial.

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(Bradford, Wakefield, Salford) already had proof of income to meet the licensing criteria.

But they didn't.

Salford and London did not have any "proof of income" adequate for Superleague.

Bradford had a high turnover yes but clubs can go spectacularly bust on high turnovers (as we saw) so that's a nonsense.

The Licensing system looks at the "business plan" primarily and that is income, expenditure and growth plans and many of the Superleague clubs business plans have a massive hole in them that is filled by a rich mans promise to fill the hole with his own money.

They can't be held to that promise as we saw with Mr. Samuels, Mr. Richardson, Mr. Wilkinson etc. They walked away.

Currently "standing down" are Mr. Hudgell, Mr. O'Connor and Mr. Fulton so three more giant holes are blown in their business plans for the rest of the license period.

What is it we want from Touluse? To deposit a "guarantee" of say £3,000,000 with the RFL. It's been offered before when Mr. "I'm standing down" O'Connor offered the RFL half a million for a license?

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And who will be responsible for the Championships ?

Like i say, the professional sport will be governed by the independent body.

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But they didn't.

Salford and London did not have any "proof of income" adequate for Superleague.

Bradford had a high turnover yes but clubs can go spectacularly bust on high turnovers (as we saw) so that's a nonsense.

The Licensing system looks at the "business plan" primarily and that is income, expenditure and growth plans and many of the Superleague clubs business plans have a massive hole in them that is filled by a rich mans promise to fill the hole with his own money.

They can't be held to that promise as we saw with Mr. Samuels, Mr. Richardson, Mr. Wilkinson etc. They walked away.

Currently "standing down" are Mr. Hudgell, Mr. O'Connor and Mr. Fulton so three more giant holes are blown in their business plans for the rest of the license period.

What is it we want from Touluse? To deposit a "guarantee" of say £3,000,000 with the RFL. It's been offered before when Mr. "I'm standing down" O'Connor offered the RFL half a million for a license?

Only you could characterise John Wilkinson as "a man who walked away". He was chairman for 25 years or so and sold the club to someone with more money than him. He certainly doesn't deserve to be slagged off in this way by someone with an anti-Salford agenda.

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Only you could characterise John Wilkinson as "a man who walked away". He was chairman for 25 years or so and sold the club to someone with more money than him. He certainly doesn't deserve to be slagged off in this way by someone with an anti-Salford agenda.

 

Fair comment about John Wilkinson I'd suggest. Whether Parksider has any anti Salford agenda or nor I couldn't say, his views seem to change with the wind.  

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From what I understand the City Council & Regional bodies are ready to invest may be up to €7M in renovating their Stade des Minimes ground. I think they will want some assurances that that we be rewarded. If they got the nod from the RFL now they would be in a slightly similar situation to the Catalans back in 2006 - time to build on & off the field.

They are lifting their on field activities. They missed by a whisker two Finals in 2013 & their U21s where runners up to the Catalans on the league ladder. Three former Dragons players with well over a hundred SL appearances under their belts - Andrew Bentley, Kane Bentley & Cyril Stacul are rumoured to be on their way to Toulouse too. Aaron Wood a top Australian here is also on board for September. May be they're cranking up their operation. They hosted the Elite 1 semis this year & drew 5500; so now all eyes on Stade Ernest Wallon in a fortnight when the Dragons are in town for the Hull KR clash. Billboards cluttering the place promoting the event. Fingers crossed.

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From what I understand the City Council & Regional bodies are ready to invest may be up to €7M in renovating their Stade des Minimes ground. I think they will want some assurances that that we be rewarded. If they got the nod from the RFL now they would be in a slightly similar situation to the Catalans back in 2006 - time to build on & off the field.

 

I've played at the Stade des Minimes and I thought it was a cracking little ground.  I don't remember it being that good for car parking and I've no real memory as to how close to the centre of the city it is.

 

I think the big question for me, is who's next after Toulouse in France assuming that they come into Superleague and are a success like Les Catalans.

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Fair comment about John Wilkinson I'd suggest. Whether Parksider has any anti Salford agenda or nor I couldn't say, his views seem to change with the wind.  

Indeed they do but he's constantly banging on about "No-one ever complains about Salford" in comparison to London even though Salford's problems aren't really comparable. Or "Rugby league has failed in Salford / Manchester" when he vehemently denies that it has failed in Wales or London. Sheffield is another club that he has a thing about - rugby league has failed there apparently and can't ever succeed.

 

Hence the comments about Wilko walking, they are designed to draw a comparison between Salford and Crusaders / Broncos. Only Wilko didn't leave Salford in the lurch like Samuel (the Messiah according to Parky) and his commitment lasted 20 years longer than Samuel.

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I've played at the Stade des Minimes and I thought it was a cracking little ground.  I don't remember it being that good for car parking and I've no real memory as to how close to the centre of the city it is.

 

I think the big question for me, is who's next after Toulouse in France assuming that they come into Superleague and are a success like Les Catalans.

I can imagine the RFL inviting Toulouse but I think a 3rd French club would require a French TV deal. I don't think a 3rd club is likely in the short-run (not enough players) and it would probably be a regional / merged team. Toulouse are the only realistic candidates as a stand-alone entity.

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Fair comment about John Wilkinson I'd suggest. Whether Parksider has any anti Salford agenda or nor I couldn't say, his views seem to change with the wind.

If you want to know whether I have any anti-salford bias i suggest you have the courtesy to ask me and not leave it to people who are genuinely biased against certain Rugby league clubs to give you an equally biased answer.

Equally if you believe my view on anything has "changed with the wind" then set out what that view is and how you think it has changed and don't be so rude. I don't seem to be able to get it through to you that to have a good debate you have to stop calling people.

Salford and Crusaders both made the 13/14th clubs in an enlarged Superleague in 2009. A big city club in the north and an expansion club in an area sympathetic to Rugby league. Both were a potential boost to the game we had to try for. Both had their struggles, both Chairmen gave up due to the financial strain.

People can read what suits them into that scenario, those with genuine bias may paint John Wilkinson as a hero and a saint and Leighton Samuels as a cruel and heartless villain. But my position is and has always been clear. I do not like people having a go at non English heartland clubs for things they do/can't do and excusing the M62 clubs for being just as bad.

That is bias and that position I have has never changed "with the wind" if you think it has then you are misunderstood.

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