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The Daddy

SL needs to bring back franchising

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If the long term objective of licencing was to bring new viable professional clubs into the top tier with some safety for long term planning then I would be ok with it and I was a fan of the approach when it was introduced.

At the turn of the century I think Rugby League had a massive opportunity for growth in this country.  The use of community development officers had seen a huge growth in participation in non traditional areas - both community and schools Rugby League.  Add that to the continuing growth of University League and the opportunity for significant expansion was there.  Licencing of top tier clubs in strategically important places would have allowed for the 'top down' and 'bottom up' development to be undertaken with a joined up approach.

The the reduction in investment though over the last 15 years or so has seen the playing base contract again and so that opportunity is all but lost to us.  If licencing is just the 'traditional' clubs feeling safe from relegation for a period of time then I really do not know what value it adds to the sport.

Today, I am comfortable with top tier Rugby League being played in the heartlands in this country with the addition of a hard working London club plus any progressive and forward thinking Championship and League 1 clubs.  Any expansion of our game will come from work on the ground overseas and I think there are exciting time ahead so I am by no means down about the future of our sport.

This season is exciting as there is an intense relegation battle and the top 5 will shoot out in a high quality play off system.  I am happy to enjoy this.

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Its a fact of British rugby league that of the clubs we have in the pyramid right now perhaps 5 (Leeds, Saints, Wigan, Wire, Hull) would get a license no questions.

A further group have the facilities but would be heavily reliant on external investment (Catalans, HKR, Huddersfield, Salford, Leigh, Newcastle, Toulouse, Toronto, York, Widnes, Fev, Fax).

Then we have the traditionally strong clubs that play out of semi derelict facilities. Wakey, Cas, Bradford, Cumbrians etc.

1 minute ago, GUBRATS said:

It is a problem , I've always said if there were 12/14 genuine ' super ' clubs able to fill a SL then myself and others really couldn't have an argument , but there isn't ATM , and its doubtful we will see them soon 

So the argument stands 

As Gubrats succinctly points out, we don't have 12/14 super clubs, we have a handful. It wouldn't be fair to exclude clubs arbitrarily on this basis

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2 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

Its a fact of British rugby league that of the clubs we have in the pyramid right now perhaps 5 (Leeds, Saints, Wigan, Wire, Hull) would get a license no questions.

A further group have the facilities but would be heavily reliant on external investment (Catalans, HKR, Huddersfield, Salford, Leigh, Newcastle, Toulouse, Toronto, York, Widnes, Fev, Fax).

Then we have the traditionally strong clubs that play out of semi derelict facilities. Wakey, Cas, Bradford, Cumbrians etc.

As Gubrats succinctly points out, we don't have 12/14 super clubs, we have a handful. It wouldn't be fair to exclude clubs arbitrarily on this basis

And perhaps more importantly , there would be no guarantee that those included would improve under a licenced system , they might survive and exist , but grow? 

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28 minutes ago, GUBRATS said:

London 

Finances ? , They haven't got any other than the generosity of one man 

Business plan ? , They don't have one other than finding another one man 

Sponsorship ? , Yes they have some , but not massive in the context of London 

Corporate facilities ? , Well it's a good wedding venue so that's a yes 

Marketing ? , According to most , non existence 

Stadium ? , Well it's a wedding venue 

Let's not discuss attendances , as at least that doesn't make the stadium an issue 

 

I Genuinely want the London Broncos to remain in Super League and be successful and there coaching, playing staff, Junior development all have been doing an amazing job... But when it comes to attendance and playing facilities they come up short of the standard of ever other Super League Club. 

Toronto are funded up to the eyeballs and can or will be able to match or better standards of all existing Super League Clubs! Except when it comes to running an academy and developing there own players.

Long term planning is required to make these thing happen and A TV Rights deal could easily  include a stipulation that one Club in Super League be Located in London/South of England. Like the NRL with Melbourne extra funds for marketing & promotion and Jr Development could be taken from TV Rights or Sponsorship deals to help a side from London/South as it adds massive value to the Comp due to presence in the that Major population centre/Market.

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45 minutes ago, Chrispmartha said:

Why so sarky, your opinion matters not a jot either.

Sorry, it was a little crass of me to reply in that manner, but I take the view that a lot of people and they are mainly SL clubs supporter's are not giving the P&R issue enough thought has to the adverse consequences it could create for the game as a whole, the opinion they express is nothing more than insular and protective of their own standing.

Regarding your first point that the interest is topsy turvey bottom instead of top, the only thing that has created that is St Helens being streets ahead of everyone else, nothing more, nothing less, the real competition is in the quest to avoid relegation.

It will always be the same in SL whatever the format, indeed apart from a very few changes in standing since it began, there will always be those at the top, the middling clubs, and those trying to avoid the ignominy of finishing bottom, apart from the bad form your own club has delivered in 3 of the last 4 seasons we all have been very close in nominating who will finish in the bottom 5, it is not rocket science to work out why! please tell me how it will change by dropping P & R?

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5 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

As Gubrats succinctly points out, we don't have 12/14 super clubs, we have a handful. It wouldn't be fair to exclude clubs arbitrarily on this basis

And it's in my opinion that if we just keep going with P&R we will never get to 12/14 clubs

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2 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

Sorry, it was a little crass of me to reply in that manner, but I take the view that a lot of people and they are mainly SL clubs supporter's are not giving the P&R issue enough thought has to the adverse consequences it could create for the game as a whole, the opinion they express is nothing more than insular and protective of their own standing.

Regarding your first point that the interest is topsy turvey bottom instead of top, the only thing that has created that is St Helens being streets ahead of everyone else, nothing more, nothing less, the real competition is in the quest to avoid relegation.

It will always be the same in SL whatever the format, indeed apart from a very few changes in standing since it began, there will always be those at the top, the middling clubs, and those trying to avoid the ignominy of finishing bottom, apart from the bad form your own club has delivered in 3 of the last 4 seasons we all have been very close in nominating who will finish in the bottom 5, it is not rocket science to work out why! please tell me how it will change by dropping P & R?

One of the main reason for licensing would be to benefit the lower leagues - the championship or whatever you want to call needs to become a good competition in it's own right not just a competition with the hope of getting promoted.

Clubs can aim to get into the top tier by application and making a solid case for being in SL

Wanting licensing to come back doesn't mean wanting it to come back in the same guise as last time. It would have to be run a whole load better.

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8 minutes ago, Chrispmartha said:

And it's in my opinion that if we just keep going with P&R we will never get to 12/14 clubs

So the obvious qustion is how will it be improved by a closed shop?

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5 minutes ago, Chrispmartha said:

One of the main reason for licensing would be to benefit the lower leagues - the championship or whatever you want to call needs to become a good competition in it's own right not just a competition with the hope of getting promoted.

Clubs can aim to get into the top tier by application and making a solid case for being in SL

Wanting licensing to come back doesn't mean wanting it to come back in the same guise as last time. It would have to be run a whole load better.

See my answer to Denton Rovers an hour or so ago.

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Just now, Harry Stottle said:

So the obvious qustion is how will it be improved by a closed shop?

Licensing doesn't have to be a closed shop but anyway it gives clubs a certain amount of stability knowing that they can build without worrying about getting relegated after a bad year, they can blood younger players, they can recruit properly and actually implement longer term strategies, and if they don't meet the criteria again in a set amount of time (maybe say 3-5 years) then they lose their license.

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20 hours ago, Themusician_2 said:

The only sport that can afford promotion and relegation is soccer. Other sports like ice hockey,american football, basketball don't take part in that money wasting exercise. RL shouldn't either.

so lets look at UK TEAM sports. Cricket, Union, Soccer and RL all have P&R. Maybe its simply part of UKmans DNA

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10 minutes ago, Chrispmartha said:

One of the main reason for licensing would be to benefit the lower leagues - the championship or whatever you want to call needs to become a good competition in it's own right not just a competition with the hope of getting promoted.

Clubs can aim to get into the top tier by application and making a solid case for being in SL

Wanting licensing to come back doesn't mean wanting it to come back in the same guise as last time. It would have to be run a whole load better.

Let's use Leigh as an example ( probably the most obvious , having won more actual RL games than any other semi pro club in the world over the last 20 years , and so essentially the club no 15 in the UK ' pecking order ' ) 

Before licencing was introduced we were averaging attendances of around 2600/2800 after 5 years of licencing those averages had dropped to around 1200/1400 , so tell me how that would make them better prepared to replace a failing SL club ?

Since our recent SL today and with the extra competition of some recent big clubs our attendances now are just over 3000 

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Objectives - to create a dynamic sport that encourages ambition whilst expanding in both FT player numbers and includes all ambitious clubs both now and in the future

 

Solution - Two FT divisions of 10 in SL, P&R between them, 3 year licence/franchise with a view to expand.

 

Criteria - Stadium and its facilities, Crowds, Min spend on squads with max linked to break even without loans, RFL £1M bond, audited Academies and Scholarships.

 

Affordability - Non UK clubs to bring their own tv deal (I envisage 4 in the structure at start), £2m for SL1 and £1m for SL2 assuming no further cash from TV

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3 minutes ago, GUBRATS said:

Let's use Leigh as an example ( probably the most obvious , having won more actual RL games than any other semi pro club in the world over the last 20 years , and so essentially the club no 15 in the UK ' pecking order ' ) 

Before licencing was introduced we were averaging attendances of around 2600/2800 after 5 years of licencing those averages had dropped to around 1200/1400 , so tell me how that would make them better prepared to replace a failing SL club ?

Since our recent SL today and with the extra competition of some recent big clubs our attendances now are just over 3000 

Maybe Leigh aren't/weren't better prepared to replace a SL club but that's not an argument against it.

If Leigh had say a chance to reapply to SL in 5 years time that gives them plenty of incentive to drive their business and club forward to achieve that but achieve it on a solid basis rather than gambling on winning a championship Grand final and having to scrabble a squad together to hopefully avoid the drop again

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2 minutes ago, sweaty craiq said:

Objectives - to create a dynamic sport that encourages ambition whilst expanding in both FT player numbers and includes all ambitious clubs both now and in the future

 

Solution - Two FT divisions of 10 in SL, P&R between them, 3 year licence/franchise with a view to expand.

 

Criteria - Stadium and its facilities, Crowds, Min spend on squads with max linked to break even without loans, RFL £1M bond, audited Academies and Scholarships.

 

Affordability - Non UK clubs to bring their own tv deal (I envisage 4 in the structure at start), £2m for SL1 and £1m for SL2 assuming no further cash from TV

You see I think that is a good compromise, I've always thought that a 2 Tier SL could actually work, but are there enough teams that are able to run FT to make 2 leagues of 10?

 

The only issue is number of games in a 10 team league.

Edited by Chrispmartha

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23 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

So the obvious qustion is how will it be improved by a closed shop?

Licensing dosnt mean a closed shop it means once accepted to the Super League clubs would have had several years to plan and organise everything required in Super League. Rather than getting 3 or 4 months to put things together after wining the Championship.

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37 minutes ago, Chrispmartha said:

And it's in my opinion that if we just keep going with P&R we will never get to 12/14 clubs

Whilst I can totally see that in terms of business stability, in regards to levels of attendances, fan interest, meaningful games (in all divisions), it can decimate them. Others have given Leigh as an example but how about Sheffield or Fev during the licensing era. 

Interest simply tanks in my view, which is far more damaging than the short term pain of relegation and readjustment.

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3 hours ago, Scubby said:

Yep, Salford are making an amazing push for the play offs and no one seems to care. That's RL!

There is a problem with this Scubby. People criticise others for being interested in what is happening at the bottom of the table, instead telling us we should be excited in the battle for 5th! 

Unfortunately I think we have done a lot of damage to the playoffs over the last few years by moving to 6 teams, and then 8 - and we then have the unfortunate position where Saints are running away with the LLS, so the battle for the top spots just isn't that compelling at the moment. 

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4 minutes ago, kiwis 13 6 said:

Licensing dosnt mean a closed shop it means once accepted to the Super League clubs would have had several years to plan and organise everything required in Super League. Rather than getting 3 or 4 months to put things together after wining the Championship.

Thats not necessarily the case any more and is increasing each season. We have essentially professional clubs in the championship now who are SL in waiting - generally building squads over at least a couple of seasons.

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10 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

Whilst I can totally see that in terms of business stability, in regards to levels of attendances, fan interest, meaningful games (in all divisions), it can decimate them. Others have given Leigh as an example but how about Sheffield or Fev during the licensing era. 

Interest simply tanks in my view, which is far more damaging than the short term pain of relegation and readjustment.

Again that's judging it on ow it was implemented last time around it needs to be done better if it comes back

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13 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

Thats not necessarily the case any more and is increasing each season. We have essentially professional clubs in the championship now who are SL in waiting - generally building squads over at least a couple of seasons.

True but they only get a green light after winning the Championship then have 3 - 4 months to pick up whatever off contract Super League and NRL players that are available at that time. As well as setting up a reserve grade side which is now a requirement of entry to Super league (how is Tronoto gonna do that?). Not to mention meet all the other admin and facility requirements at short notice. This basically all but dooms clubs promoted at short notice to be the most likely candidate for relegation.

Edited by kiwis 13 6

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4 minutes ago, Chrispmartha said:

Again that's judging it on ow it was implemented last time around it needs to be done better if it comes back

I totally agree, but I don't think it will.

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2 minutes ago, kiwis 13 6 said:

True but they only get a green light after winning the Championship then have 3 - 4 months to pick up whatever off contract Super League and NRL players that are available at that time. As well as setting up a reserve grade side which is now a requirement of entry to Super league (how is Tronoto gonna do that?). Not to mention meet all the other admin and facility requirements at short notice. 

Based on SL currently not being licensed or franchised I'm willing to bet that there will be some sort of a "grace period" for teams coming up from the championship to meet new criteria. Indeed in time I think we'll see a significant chunk if not all of the championship with similar setups to SL clubs just on lower budgets, making the jump less severe.

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26 minutes ago, Chrispmartha said:

If Leigh had say a chance to reapply to SL in 5 years time that gives them plenty of incentive to drive their business and club forward to achieve that but achieve it on a solid basis rather than gambling on winning a championship Grand final and having to scrabble a squad together to hopefully avoid the drop again

I'm broadly in favour of licensing of some sort - I tend to think the pluses outweigh the minuses for the game overall - but we should be transparent about the downsides: how would 5 years stuck in the championship give Leigh the opportunity to do anything, particularly on the business side? Crowds and interest would be decimated. Clubs outside the top flight would become souped-up community clubs.

Now, that's not necessarily a bad thing because for many of them that offers a more stable long-term future. But for those on the cusp, the longer they are locked out from the top flight, the further away they will be from building a business that could survive in Superleague. 

In the UK at least, you can't build a Superleague club outside Superleague. 

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4 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

Based on SL currently not being licensed or franchised I'm willing to bet that there will be some sort of a "grace period" for teams coming up from the championship to meet new criteria. Indeed in time I think we'll see a significant chunk if not all of the championship with similar setups to SL clubs just on lower budgets, making the jump less severe.

Grace period is a good idea but then the competition either has to be expanding in size or one club will be on Super League death row for an extended period

Edited by kiwis 13 6

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