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Elstone admits Super League considering overseas team quota to ‘protect value’ in competition

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Super League chief executive Robert Elstone has admitted that they are in discussions to introduce a quota restricting the number of overseas teams in the top-flight to an initial limit of three – but insists they will be prepared to admit extra non-British teams if they add value to the competition. League Express revealed last month how talks surrounding the…

The post Elstone admits Super League considering overseas team quota to ‘protect value’ in competition appeared first on Total Rugby League.

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1 hour ago, Total Rugby League said:

Super League chief executive Robert Elstone has admitted that they are in discussions to introduce a quota restricting the number of overseas teams in the top-flight to an initial limit of three – but insists they will be prepared to admit extra non-British teams if they add value to the competition. League Express revealed last month how talks surrounding the…

The post Elstone admits Super League considering overseas team quota to ‘protect value’ in competition appeared first on Total Rugby League.

View the full article

Surely the overriding factor is the TV deal. This brings the vast majority of funding which keeps clubs thriving. Will foreign clubs increase the deal or does less British subscribers make it less ?

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This is some serious BS. The obvious thing to do is have a minimum quota of X amount of UK clubs in SL not the other way around. That way you could add the number of teams to SL not restrict promotion earned on merit.

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It's strange the attitude this publication takes. You wouldn't think it was a publication that supposedly championed the game.

You could write that exact same article as "Elstone excited by expansion to new markets and Super league prepared to over-ride agreements with RFL to admit them"

One could only assume that the negative phrasing gets more clicks, but if you were that passionate about the game, you would wonder if that was worth it 

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16 minutes ago, northamptoncougar said:

This is some serious BS. The obvious thing to do is have a minimum quota of X amount of UK clubs in SL not the other way around. That way you could add the number of teams to SL not restrict promotion earned on merit.

Absolutely. If SL's SKY TV contract depends on the number of English clubs (by the figures given at least) being 9, then say that is the minimum.

I think a major division we're going to see is that some SL clubs want the salary cap increasing while others are desperate for it not to as they either scrape to nearly achieve it now or simply don't at all. This is in contrast to certainly the NA clubs who everyone assumes will be spending to cap. 

Because we don't know whether the 3 foreign clubs is out of 12 or out of an expanded 14, we cannot accurately suggest why this has been muted. If its the former, my suspicion is that they are focussing on two clubs in SL, Salford and London, who don't spend to cap currently or at least struggle to for a full season. Wakefield, Cas and in their time Widnes have been in that bracket recently too AFAIK. 

The cynic in me thinks this is a smokescreen masking the top SL clubs fear of North American rivals competing with them on and off the pitch. Is this really 3 out of the top 12, or 3 out of the top 5 that needs to be thought through with 'open eyes'.

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3 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

Absolutely. If SL's SKY TV contract depends on the number of English clubs (by the figures given at least) being 9, then say that is the minimum.

I think a major division we're going to see is that some SL clubs want the salary cap increasing while others are desperate for it not to as they either scrape to nearly achieve it now or simply don't at all. This is in contrast to certainly the NA clubs who everyone assumes will be spending to cap. 

Because we don't know whether the 3 foreign clubs is out of 12 or out of an expanded 14, we cannot accurately suggest why this has been muted. If its the former, my suspicion is that they are focussing on two clubs in SL, Salford and London, who don't spend to cap currently or at least struggle to for a full season. Wakefield, Cas and in their time Widnes have been in that bracket recently too AFAIK. 

The cynic in me thinks this is a smokescreen masking the top SL clubs fear of North American rivals competing with them on and off the pitch. Is this really 3 out of the top 12, or 3 out of the top 5 that needs to be thought through with 'open eyes'.

As I say above , says plenty but also says nothing 

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Agreed...this is a nothing statement really, however, a comment that doesn't 'scream' vision.

Please Rob Elstone - CAST VISION, not uncertainty and doubt!

Furthermore - Im a firm believer in presenting CLEAR pathways to clubs, investors etc.

Yes, always do your due diligence. But don't put further restrictions on potential investors. 'If' we are a promotion/relegation sport, then let it be so. I for one would be disappointed if an 'Ottawa' or whoever climbed the leagues, and 'earned' promotion, to then be told 'no.' You can't do that, it isn't transparent. Nor is the pathway is that's the option.

Do the due diligence BEFORE entering League one (or the championship if thats decided in the future).

This may be unpopular...but if English clubs, who have had 100 years circa to establish themselves feel threatened by new uprising markets, then so be it. Madness is doing the same thing over, and expecting different results!

I for one welcome this new interest. Please RFL and SL - do NOT miss the opportunity of this! You have to ride on the crest of a wave.

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37 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

It's strange the attitude this publication takes. You wouldn't think it was a publication that supposedly championed the game.

You could write that exact same article as "Elstone excited by expansion to new markets and Super league prepared to over-ride agreements with RFL to admit them"

One could only assume that the negative phrasing gets more clicks, but if you were that passionate about the game, you would wonder if that was worth it 

I agree.

When reading the headline and first sentence, using the words ‘admits’ and ‘admitted’ it sounded like Elstone and others had been having clandestine meanings and someone had rumbled them.

Poor journalism.

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5 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

Absolutely. If SL's SKY TV contract depends on the number of English clubs (by the figures given at least) being 9, then say that is the minimum.

I think a major division we're going to see is that some SL clubs want the salary cap increasing while others are desperate for it not to as they either scrape to nearly achieve it now or simply don't at all. This is in contrast to certainly the NA clubs who everyone assumes will be spending to cap. 

Because we don't know whether the 3 foreign clubs is out of 12 or out of an expanded 14, we cannot accurately suggest why this has been muted. If its the former, my suspicion is that they are focussing on two clubs in SL, Salford and London, who don't spend to cap currently or at least struggle to for a full season. Wakefield, Cas and in their time Widnes have been in that bracket recently too AFAIK. 

The cynic in me thinks this is a smokescreen masking the top SL clubs fear of North American rivals competing with them on and off the pitch. Is this really 3 out of the top 12, or 3 out of the top 5 that needs to be thought through with 'open eyes'.

It seems to me the clearer issues that SL has is with the clubs being admitted through P+R. It seems pretty clear from what Elstone says that their issue isn't with how many but who and why.

Im not sure why it is being framed so negatively. It seems pretty obvious and understandable that SL wouldn't want to end up with 4/5/6 overseas clubs when 2 or 3 of them haven't the time, inclination or ability to capitalise on the opportunity. Nor do they want clubs outside of SL being unable to enter because of artificial limits. 
It seems pretty clear that if Toronto, Toulouse, Ottawa, NYC are able to fulfil their commercial promise their are in. If anyone comes in and covers those commercial promises they are in and im not sure why anyone would have thought it any different. 

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On the face of it i would have thought that 3 teams from North America in a 14 team Super League would add value to the TV contract, which in turn i would have thought would have brought in some North American sponsors possibly trying to break into the British business market, and also via TV adverts on game days

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It's interesting. Rugby League in England is really reaping more than a century of not being able to grow the game outside the north. If you had a strong London, strong Manchester, strong West Midlands, this conversation wouldn't happen. 

They're essentially propping up poor businesses.

SL needs to ride the NA expansion while they can. It's not going to stick around forever. Once they're strong enough or pushed out, they'll make their own competition that will see SL drain to nothing.

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This is a far too conservative approach, a laager mentality if you will. If there were four sides from outside the UK in SL, does that mean the Sky TV deal is negatively affected? As long as people in the UK want to watch SL, then there is a product of value. I don't know why the location of clubs will affect SL viewing, as long as the product delivers entertainment. 

On that basis, IMO this is about protecting the existing UK clubs and their income. If London replaces Widnes, fine. If New York replaces a UK club, then it has to be evaluated to see what NY bring to the table. Is it a case that new offshore teams need to increase the media payout or they are not welcome? 

There seems to be fear expressed without their being sure there is something they need to fear. I'm struggling to know what the risk is.The Luddites had a fear for their livelihoods but the fear turned out to be unfounded, and in fact, holding back progress. I see a similar attitude with UK RL at the moment. Fear of change when it seems to many an opportunity too good not to try. 

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It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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Sensible.

Allows Toronto and Toulouse to come in while still maintaining a mainly British competition seeing as British TV bank rolls the sport.

But it still allows for more teams if they can add value to broadcast deals down the line. Ideal if you ask me.

Elstone should be looking at putting Bradford in, increase the value of any broadcast deal straight away.

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I think what he's saying is sensible and responsible. Of course effective international expansion shouldn't be left to the randomness of p&r! It should only be done if it will work and add value - and if it will, it should be done in a way that will best capitalise on it. That's not a negative approach to take at all. It's simply about taking ownership of the competition's makeup, rather than letting on field performance in a lower level semi professional comp dictate significant strategic decision making for the top level. Seems pretty obvious to me.

Edited by ghost crayfish
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24 minutes ago, ghost crayfish said:

I think what he's saying is sensible and responsible. Of course effective international expansion shouldn't be left to the randomness of p&r! It should only be done if it will work and add value - and if it will, it should be done in a way that will best capitalise on it. That's not a negative approach to take at all. It's simply about taking ownership of the competition's makeup, rather than letting on field performance in a lower level semi professional comp dictate significant strategic decision making for the top level. Seems pretty obvious to me.

UK sport is all about P/R with teams rewarded by in field performance. You seem to feel that promotion on value added is sensible and responsible. I'd call that approach conservative (which is what I did do) at best. Managing it would be the issue. Who decides the value being offered? Taking ownership or taking too much control of who is worthy?

Letting teams get the gates of SL, then knocking them back at the last hurdle seams a recipe for disaster to me. The ill will could be extremely damaging. I'd call it opening a can of worms. I’d say a licensing system would be fairer.

Edited by RayCee
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My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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10 minutes ago, RayCee said:

UK sport is all about P/R with teams rewarded by in field performance. You seem to feel that promotion on value added is sensible and responsible. I'd call that approach conservative (which is what I did do) at best. Managing it would be the issue. Who decides the value being offered? Taking ownership or taking too much control of who is worthy?

Letting teams get the gates of SL, then knocking them back at the last hurdle seams a recipe for disaster to me. The ill will could be extremely damaging. I'd call it opening a can of worms. I’d say a licensing system would be fairer.

The governing body assess the value being offered, and works with those franchises to ensure expansion is successful. That's how to manage something responsibly! If Toronto can help the game attract better/more sponsors, broadcasters etc brilliant - get them in on a 5 year license and work with them on a strategy to ensure the expansion into Toronto fulfills it's potential for the club, and the competition. Develop a clear top level expansion strategy and work with the clubs to achieve it.

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1 hour ago, ghost crayfish said:

The governing body assess the value being offered, and works with those franchises to ensure expansion is successful. That's how to manage something responsibly! If Toronto can help the game attract better/more sponsors, broadcasters etc brilliant - get them in on a 5 year license and work with them on a strategy to ensure the expansion into Toronto fulfills it's potential for the club, and the competition. Develop a clear top level expansion strategy and work with the clubs to achieve it.

Have you been following RL very long? I mean that in funny way.

As I've said, these new overseas clubs pose no real risk to RL that I can see and offer so much potential. The concern with this sort of comment is it could put off potential investors. I know if I was thinking of putting a few million into something, I'd hope for a more inviting attitude than you can come but don't necessarily expect to get to the top. I would be thinking this could be a waste of money and I will look elsewhere to spend my hard earned.

Edited by RayCee
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My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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15 hours ago, Cdd said:

Elstone should be looking at putting Bradford in, increase the value of any broadcast deal straight away.

So the good citizens of Bradford will then subscribe to Sky in their millions, just because the Bulls are artificially placed in SL, and save the game!

Edited by deluded pom?
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This illustrates an issue for Elstone. Is he there to promote SL or the interests of the clubs currently in SL? His problem is if he starts threatening the interests of too many of the current SL clubs he will be out. 

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9 hours ago, Total Rugby League said:

Super League chief executive Robert Elstone has admitted that they are in discussions to introduce a quota restricting the number of overseas teams in the top-flight to an initial limit of three – but insists they will be prepared to admit extra non-British teams if they add value to the competition. League Express revealed last month how talks surrounding the…

The post Elstone admits Super League considering overseas team quota to ‘protect value’ in competition appeared first on Total Rugby League.

View the full article

" So we are looking at limiting it to 3 , but we might accept more , but we might not " , sorry that just isn't good enough with 2 more set to join , set out the criteria now 

I don't actually see how 3 is the workable number , it all revolves around the broadcast deal , given the deal that see's Toronto games being shown along with a game from France every other week surely the logical structure would be 2 French and 2 NA teams , they then can set out it quite simply , you can enter SL on a similar situation to the one we have with Catalan and Toronto , and that's it , no further expansion until we see how that works out , so any further clubs know from the start they would have to be prepared to remain in the lower tiers 

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1 hour ago, RayCee said:

Have you been following RL very long? I mean that in funny way.

As I've said, these new overseas clubs pose no real risk to RL that I can see and offer so much potential. The concern with this sort of comment is it could put off potential investors. I know if I was thinking of putting a few million into something, I'd hope for a more inviting attitude than you can come but don't necessarily expect to get to the top. I would be thinking this could be a waste of money and I will look elsewhere to spend my hard earned.

You're misinterpreting what I'm saying completely. I'm saying taking a strategic approach is a good, positive move. You're trying to somehow make that anti-expansion. I am PRO expansion. I thought superleague's only hope of prolonged professional survival is successful expansion. So they have to get it right. I'll try this once more: I'm suggesting working with these clubs to become a successful part of superleague for the long term, by giving licenses when appropriate, guaranteeing their long-term security in the top flight, and giving them a chance to grow as a club in unison with the overall comp. Who knows, ambitious and successful potential investors may actually prefer buying into a clear, coherent long term plan that promises some security and support, over an ad hoc mess that leaves them on their own!

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25 minutes ago, GUBRATS said:

" So we are looking at limiting it to 3 , but we might accept more , but we might not " , sorry that just isn't good enough with 2 more set to join , set out the criteria now 

I don't actually see how 3 is the workable number , it all revolves around the broadcast deal , given the deal that see's Toronto games being shown along with a game from France every other week surely the logical structure would be 2 French and 2 NA teams , they then can set out it quite simply , you can enter SL on a similar situation to the one we have with Catalan and Toronto , and that's it , no further expansion until we see how that works out , so any further clubs know from the start they would have to be prepared to remain in the lower tiers 

The problem with that is that it treats all overseas clubs as the same and risks admitting a club that can't take advantage of the opportunity and locking out one that does. 

 

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