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The never-ending League Restructure debate (Many merged threads)

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He's up against a rival code that is the national game and swamps all others, up against two other sports who have had tremendous home grown success very recently, up against a direct rival handling code with a bigger infrastructure and again international success in recent weeks. Only one TV company wants his game at knockdown price, advertisers see no value in it, and to top that he's got a rival league within his own sport who are draining his clubs of quality players. He can't get development money for the grass roots as kids prefer other sports, and he only has a handful of chairmen willing to invest in his flagship SL clubs.

So perhaps people may consider actually judging him against the circumstances, and pondering on the idea that somewhere there's someone that can succeed against such massive odds.

Your defence of Nigel is admirable with Parky and you're right: whoever is top dog at the RFL is going to be faced with some monumental challenges.

However, the harsh reality is that Nigel's every whim has been backed by the clubs (clubcall, licensing etc) and he's now not only gone completely about face and is telling us that the sport NEEDED p&r after all. Not only this but he's also shoehorning in another of his daft schemes.

I just don't see how he has any credibility left given his previous position on licensing.

Moreover, this whole process has been handled so clumsily in the full glare of the public and has completely detracted from the build up towards the World Cup.

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Your defence of Nigel is admirable with Parky and you're right: whoever is top dog at the RFL is going to be faced with some monumental challenges.

However, the harsh reality is that Nigel's every whim has been backed by the clubs (clubcall, licensing etc) and he's now not only gone completely about face and is telling us that the sport NEEDED p&r after all. Not only this but he's also shoehorning in another of his daft schemes.

I just don't see how he has any credibility left given his previous position on licensing.

Moreover, this whole process has been handled so clumsily in the full glare of the public and has completely detracted from the build up towards the World Cup.

 

 

Licensing was introduced under Lewis' stewardship. Clubcall is indeed one of Wood's stunning innovations.

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Licensing was introduced under Lewis' stewardship. Clubcall is indeed one of Wood's stunning innovations.

Was Wood anti-licensing? Or did he defend the process with the same banal management speak as he employs to champion P&R?

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He's up against a rival code that is the national game and swamps all others, up against two other sports who have had tremendous home grown success very recently, up against a direct rival handling code with a bigger infrastructure and again international success in recent weeks. Only one TV company wants his game at knockdown price, advertisers see no value in it, and to top that he's got a rival league within his own sport who are draining his clubs of quality players. He can't get development money for the grass roots as kids prefer other sports, and he only has a handful of chairmen willing to invest in his flagship SL clubs.

 

So perhaps people may consider actually judging him against the circumstances, and pondering on the idea that somewhere there's someone that can succeed against such massive odds.

 

This is an excellent post. Pragmatism may be at odds with old business thinking but it is actually the one thing keeping many businesses afloat.

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However, the harsh reality is that Nigel's every whim has been backed by the clubs and he's now not only gone completely about face and is telling us that the sport NEEDED p&r after all.

Perhaps you'd like to consider when Mr. Wood and "the clubs" get in a room who actually makes the final decision? I don't know for sure and would welcome anyone telling us the answer. those who make the final decision are ultimately culpable but.......

Perhaps you'd also like to consider that if a policy like licensing is not working and the clubs go back to P & R it is not good business practice to admit the game failed under system one, and introduced system two which failed as well. Would you have Mr. Wood say to the world "P & R was no good and we found licensing to be worse so we're going back to P & R which still won't work"??

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I'm not going to pick out the names but it's absolutely essential in my eyes that the 24 teams involved initially need to be selected through some form of licensing, rather than arbitrarily as happened in 1996.

I do apologise for too many opposite views but if the policy decision is we go back to P & R then it breaks the policy to then start using licensing again.

To abandon licensing and then allow Toulouse or London to be given their own individual licence as London and Catalans were 2006 would rightly cause outrage amongst the clubs who look like voting for a return to P & R.

As for licensing across the board the problem was only five clubs came up to the original license standard of an "A" after six years. Several of the "C" grade chairmen started to give up hope and that's what I see as the reason for it's abandonment.

P & R puts no pressure on anyone to have to grow the business or invest their own money. Licensing did and those pressures to me were too much.

Edited by The Parksider

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Licensing hasn't failed; it needed tweaking and, at times, has been poorly managed (eg, the Crusaders debacle, expanding to 14 clubs) but to say it's failed entirely would be wrong.

The issue for me is Nigel Wood, as one of the architects of the licensing system, is allowed to come out and publicly state that it didn't work. Yet we're still supposed to trust him to implement

a new system that, in its own way, is equally radical.

If licensing was a failure, surely he has to shoulder some of the blame and surely he's not to be trusted to implement an effective alternative.

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Licensing hasn't failed; If licensing was a failure, surely he has to shoulder some of the blame and surely he's not to be trusted to implement an effective alternative.

It was Ralph Rimmer who explained that licensing was required to create a stable environment for clubs to grow as professional clubs. The clubs agreed and went for that.

Wakefield then went bust, Bradford went bust, Salford nearly dissapeared, London went backwards and the chairmen of Cas, HKR and Widnes started to declare no more investment from them.

Half the league. Now Wood was behind it, as was Lewis, as was Rimmer, as were the SL clubs themselves who voted for the principle.

I wouldn't trust any of them to "implement an effective alternative". I do though leave the floor open for anyone on here to tell us what that may be?

Edited by The Parksider

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The grade A clubs would be grade A without licencing. There are no grade C clubs now grade A so how has it not failed utterly?

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I do apologise for too many opposite views but if the policy decision is we go back to P & R then it breaks the policy to then start using licensing again.

To abandon licensing and then allow Toulouse or London to be given their own individual licence as London and Catalans were 2006 would rightly cause outrage amongst the clubs who look like voting for a return to P & R.

As for licensing across the board the problem was only five clubs came up to the original license standard of an "A" after six years. Several of the "C" grade chairmen started to give up hope and that's what I see as the reason for it's abandonment.

P & R puts no pressure on anyone to have to grow the business or invest their own money. Licensing did and those pressures to me were too much.

The problem, as always, is that we always seem to be drawn towards 'innovative' (I'm growing to hate that word!) and radical solutions.

It's always a case of revolution rather than evolution and 'throwing the baby out with the bathwater.'

They could have announced that, after a review, they had decided to modify the licensing process and create an extra six licenses in 2015, with a move towards promotion and relegation between two 10-team leagues.

This would've achieved the same outcomes and would've pleased pretty much everyone, whilst still maintaining off-field standards and avoiding the sort of desperate free-for-all we're likely to witness next year.

Moreover, it would also have allowed us to implement a fairer funding model which would've made p&r between the two divisions much more manageable and sustainable.

Instead we've had a succession of 'radical' and intrinsically flawed ideas floated, quite clear disparity in the proposed funding and a clumsy debate that has rumbled on for far too long and totally detracted from the build-up towards the World Cup.

Edited by Pottsy

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The grade A clubs would be grade A without licencing. There are no grade C clubs now grade A so how has it not failed utterly?

We seem hung up on what exactly failed.

Would licensing work for say a fifth division in soccer?

Did Licensing deliver by giving clubs a sustained period in which to grow - was that it's remit?

Wasn't it the clubs who failed to grow?

Was licensing the wrong choice?

Was the right choice to stay with P & R?

Is hindsight a wonderful thing??

Your thoughts?

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We seem hung up on what exactly failed.

Would licensing work for say a fifth division in soccer?

Did Licensing deliver by giving clubs a sustained period in which to grow - was that it's remit?

Wasn't it the clubs who failed to grow?

Was licensing the wrong choice?

Was the right choice to stay with P & R?

Is hindsight a wonderful thing??

Your thoughts?

http://youtu.be/8RmwAHcVTCI

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We seem hung up on what exactly failed.

Would licensing work for say a fifth division in soccer?

Did Licensing deliver by giving clubs a sustained period in which to grow - was that it's remit?

Wasn't it the clubs who failed to grow?

Was licensing the wrong choice?

Was the right choice to stay with P & R?

Is hindsight a wonderful thing??

Your thoughts?

 

I always thought licencing was the wrong choice and it's a simple answer. 

 

Sports generally belonged to the people in this country, where licencing/franchising works is when you can translate the level of control/interest by the people to a TV audience and new markets. What we have found is that RL via a licenced SL just hasn't achieved that. No new investment, no new growth, the game still relies on the people, hence what seems to be a U-turn. Add in the challenges in recent times and it makes licencing look like a disaster. It got no where near any level of sustainability and the cracks appeared within months.

 

Also licences need to be sustained for a long period, but without investment and a plan for investment at key stages, they will fail. 3 years isn't enough, one platform isn't enough, one market isn't enough. Therefore licencing was always going to fail because the figures didn't add up. The investments that were made were always from within, i.e more home games, or a larger pool of clubs for the play-offs, or more money from the chairmen etc etc etc

 

 

To offer a scenario where licencing exists all but in name is football. In the early 90's the transition was easy. The premier league became a game for TV, with new markets, and different platforms. it no longer belongs to the people. The premier league doesn't even need them. The fans have doggedly hung in their because they matter to the players and coaches but to be frank, they're being ripped off royally.

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Agreed..bring it on....striking at the PTB, no gumshields, no  interchanges, win money only, cinder terraces and wooden stands, blocked outside WCs, cauliflower ears,  refs wearing blazers on-field.   Oh how I miss those great days.


Four legs good - two legs bad

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I always thought licencing was the wrong choice and it's a simple answer. 

 

Sports generally belonged to the people in this country, where licencing/franchising works is when you can translate the level of control/interest by the people to a TV audience and new markets. What we have found is that RL via a licenced SL just hasn't achieved that. No new investment, no new growth, the game still relies on the people, hence what seems to be a U-turn. Add in the challenges in recent times and it makes licencing look like a disaster. It got no where near any level of sustainability and the cracks appeared within months.

 

Also licences need to be sustained for a long period, but without investment and a plan for investment at key stages, they will fail. 3 years isn't enough, one platform isn't enough, one market isn't enough. Therefore licencing was always going to fail because the figures didn't add up. The investments that were made were always from within, i.e more home games, or a larger pool of clubs for the play-offs, or more money from the chairmen etc etc etc

 

 

To offer a scenario where licencing exists all but in name is football. In the early 90's the transition was easy. The premier league became a game for TV, with new markets, and different platforms. it no longer belongs to the people. The premier league doesn't even need them. The fans have doggedly hung in their because they matter to the players and coaches but to be frank, they're being ripped off royally.

 

Enjoyed that......

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Agreed..bring it on....striking at the PTB, no gumshields, no  interchanges, win money only, cinder terraces and wooden stands, blocked outside WCs, cauliflower ears,  refs wearing blazers on-field.   Oh how I miss those great days.

 

WCs? **** behind the stand!

And the old Athletic Grounds could have done with a few cinders in the mud-filled car parks on the approach to the ground.

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Licensing was introduced under Lewis' stewardship. Clubcall is indeed one of Wood's stunning innovations.

 

Lewis introduced the idea of licensing in 2005. Wood appointed Chief Executive in Nov 2007 implemented that idea in conjunction with the clubs. People tend to forget that...

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WCs? **** behind the stand!

And the old Athletic Grounds could have done with a few cinders in the mud-filled car parks on the approach to the ground.

And don't forget the lumps of rust falling from what was left of the grandstand roof into our luke-warm (if we were lucky) Bovrils! At least we didn't get anaemia.

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Guys, I've just seen the Nigel Wood interview on Boots N All, which was interesting. I think it's clear that he's pushing for the three-8's, what I don't understand is what will happen to the clubs accumulated points once the leagues split into 3? (Sorry if this has been asked before). Will the clubs simply restart at zero or will their points be taken to the new league?

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Guys, I've just seen the Nigel Wood interview on Boots N All, which was interesting. I think it's clear that he's pushing for the three-8's, what I don't understand is what will happen to the clubs accumulated points once the leagues split into 3? (Sorry if this has been asked before). Will the clubs simply restart at zero or will their points be taken to the new league?

Surely its (quite rightly) wiped clean?

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I believe it is for the middle tier, but not for the other two.

Cheers. That makes sense! So 4 teams from SL would be dragged into the middle tier along with the best 4 from the Championship, which would currently mean Broncos, Salford, Widnes, Castleford, Featherstone, Sheffield, Halifax and Leigh. So my next question is how would they decide promotion from this tier into SL for the following year ie surely it wouldn't be the top 4 would it?

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Cheers. That makes sense! So 4 teams from SL would be dragged into the middle tier along with the best 4 from the Championship, which would currently mean Broncos, Salford, Widnes, Castleford, Featherstone, Sheffield, Halifax and Leigh. So my next question is how would they decide promotion from this tier into SL for the following year ie surely it wouldn't be the top 4 would it?

Well I think the theory is that they each play each other just once giving them all 7 games. The problem then is to decide which clubs get 4 home games and which clubs get 4 away games. This on top of the total imbalance between the 4 SL clubs and the 4 Championship clubs over salary caps, funding from Sky or Central funds, the discrepancy in the number of foreign national players allowed for each league. I would like to hear what the benefits are for Championship clubs that are not in the top four?


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.

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I still can't get my head round what the bottom eight are actually playing for apart from avoiding bottom an therefore you'd assume relegation into champ 1.

Normally in a comp you compete to be champions. Not just to avoid being last.

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