Championship club calls for a different promotion and relegation model for new rugby league era instead of IMG’s proposal

THERE has been much said about the IMG meeting with all 36 professional clubs at the home of the Huddersfield Giants, the John Smith’s Stadium, last week.

One of the main opponents to the plans laid out by IMG – which will see a grading system based on fandom, performance, finance, stadium and catchment – has been the Keighley Cougars.

Cougars owners Ryan O’Neill and Kaue Garcia handed members of the media as well as the 35 other club representatives at the meeting a pamphlet containing why they were opposed to a potential new structure.

Now the RFL has reached out to the Keighley pair  to listen and understand the very well publicised concerns regarding the IMG proposals.

Chair of the RFL, Simon Johnson met with Ryan and Kaue in central London on Tuesday spending 4 hours in discussions.

O’Neill said: “The meeting was largely positive. Simon listened to our scepticism and wants to reach a unified position where all clubs can agree to a restructure”

On behalf of the RFL, Simon Johnson agreed to feedback to IMG the concerns and proposals of the Keighley Cougars.

O’Neill continued: “Our key points are that promotion and relegation should be on a 2 up, 2 down model. We tentatively agree that only category A and category B clubs should be in Super League, but that there should not be sub-grading within the A and B categories.

“We will continue to express our stance on the situation and of course update our fans in due course”.