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1 hour ago, Mathius Hellwege said:

What is or was the best chance to expand from the M62 corridor 

newcastle

cardiff

coventry

Birmingham

i think the answer is obvious

if we want to expand with any hope, it's not so much a list of cities as a list of people with the money to invest which is most important.

every time a club starts up it has enough money to last a season if its lucky and then more often than not just struggles on until it fails. what's needed is a lot of money been invested into a club for 5 years minimum better still 10 years.

look to Australia to see how they bring clubs through always well-funded and not just for a couple of years.

of course, it will never happen here as most clubs will moan if one club get 10 quid more than another in funding. we need new clubs to expand the game as its obvious that long established cubs have just gone from failure to ruin year on year.

just look at the atts of many clubs that have been around for a hundred years yet struggle to reach 1,500 for a game and quite often can't even reach 500 yet still pretend they are Professional just because they did well 50 years ago or more.

perhaps less clubs but better funded is the way forward.

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10 minutes ago, RugbyLeagueGeek said:

Maybe they're not interested in watching second rate semi-pro RL? Relatively few people in the heartlands seem to be interested in second rate semi-pro RL either.

Then Newcastle are a dead duck, are they not?

"We'll sell you a seat .... but you'll only need the edge of it!"

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2 minutes ago, RugbyLeagueGeek said:

Evidently in their current guise, yes. I don't think they're going to be the last semi pro club to bite the dust either unfortunately.

The numbers are there but performances on the pitch have been shocking. Dennis Betts and Ocarrol should of been rid of faster. A lot of false promises and spouting super league put alot of pressure on the side. Attendances of 700-2,000 during seasons. Won’t be the last club to jack it in. Img grading anything to do with it. Thunder nailed on as grade B. Oldham spending big, what if they are not a cat B, could it all be a waste of money 

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Samoa game at at James’

The stat that really stands out for me – 55% of those inside St James’ Park were from the north-east. I think if we just reflect on that for a moment, that is really quite staggering. I think that is the impact of major events; attracting a new audience.

On Saturday night, after the England game, we had our highest sales since we opened the ballot two years ago. 

The top buying postcode on Saturday night was for London. We are now seeing a trend where people are plotting an England path.

 

what raised many eyebrows with thunder fans was the lack of advertising of thunder especially with worldcup on door, ppl in the area not even knowing we had a league side. Falcons get thousands in. Something not right that we couldn’t pull in the big numbers. Kurdi has probably thought long and hard at the money he’s losing each year in league and the img restructure. Money coming in now with the nufc women’s game being played at Kingston park and supported by Amanda staverly.  We struggled to get quality players up here because of training on evenings and players living on the m62 with family’s. Could only attract younger academy super league cast offs and put them in accommodation in town whist our local players were kicked out of the side by dual reg players who would just come up to play and not train and play. Went full time which ended in disaster. Took too long to sack Betts and ocarrrol off, bigger sides would of fired them 6 games in. Players told moving back to part time of which they had full time contracts still and hence cheesed them off. Few moved on and ones that couldn’t find a club got stuck with a nice wage weren’t up to the task of keeping us up. Not been a good two years 

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Despite the handwringing on here the truth is most RL fans couldn't give a monkey's about clubs outside the heartlands. In fact, many of them actively dislike these clubs. 

In the end, you get what you want.

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"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."

Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

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11 minutes ago, Mumby Magic said:

It's quite a biggy this one tbh. Yes it's an expansion club, however it's a club in whatever guide that's been around for 24 years. They've continued before and I feel they will again. Should the RFL intervene? Should they for other clubs? 

Wouldn’t be fair on other clubs that’s gone to start that now. Expansion hasn’t really been protected or properly thought of. I can also see why heartland clubs would want to protect there own as well. Expansion Clubs needed a chance to build in super league like Toulouse I believe would of be frites another year (luckily for them they get a slight hope of getting back up) but they should be allowed to build for a few year then if it’s not going to work so be it. Trying to go into each season in the unknown and signings are all done and dusted before the season and with a playoff system that doesn’t gaurentee you promotion as anything can happen, then no wonder clubs are at a loss what to do because of structures. Can only see more going bust/pulling out 

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We often see posts on here suggesting expansion clubs need extra investment , sometimes suggesting RFL or ' Central Funding ' be used , citing the expansion done in the NRL and in principle I agree , again suggesting similar 15 years ago when we had licencing although my suggestion was funding and ownership of the new clubs would be by the other lower tier clubs 

The problem with central or RFL money being used is that then creates resentment at existing heartland clubs , whose fans and management's are criticised on here by those advocating this type of expansion , but that is the way it works , while you may gain fans and sponsorship at the new clubs that resentment can cost existing clubs support , it's just human nature 

The answer to expansion , well successful expansion is money , just like most other things 

I hope Newcastle can remain as a club in the semi pro ranks , I've not visited them since Leigh's ill fated visit 15 years ago when their last financial implosion saved Leigh from relegation , but everybody since then has been very complementary of their visits and the set up at Kingston Park was excellent 

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7 hours ago, ThunderLeague said:

The numbers are there but performances on the pitch have been shocking. Dennis Betts and Ocarrol should of been rid of faster. A lot of false promises and spouting super league put alot of pressure on the side. Attendances of 700-2,000 during seasons. Won’t be the last club to jack it in. Img grading anything to do with it. Thunder nailed on as grade B. Oldham spending big, what if they are not a cat B, could it all be a waste of money 

Maybe Thunder need to look a bit closer to home. The attendances are more than respectable, especially for a team winning so few games. Better than Batley, for instance, who are often held up as an example of solid financial management. Why are Thunder in trouble?

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"We'll sell you a seat .... but you'll only need the edge of it!"

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10 hours ago, Toby Chopra said:

So what should they have done? Pumped unlimited amounts of (imaginary) money into Newcastle and any other failing club without end?

I take your point on the club itself.

My recent worry was Newcastle's change of plan re. scholarship/academy for 2024. It now seems it was probably just a cost-cutting device and even then not enough. The RFL *must* safeguard the NE junior pathway. If that goes, it will be insult on top of injury.

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yet another nail in the coffin of semi-pro rugby league, I wrote this earlier in the week on the Workington Town forum, and it seems even more relevant now than it did a few days ago...

 

I believe the Chairs of League One clubs should be proposing a vote of no confidence in the RFL management.

They really are a rudderless ship seemingly devoid of any type of ideas as to how to rebuild the profile of the game.

Let's be brutally honest here, League One is a shambles and it seems the RFL are hell bent on destroying the professional game below championship level or why else would you persevere with a 9 team competition when it's plainly obvious that club's cannot survive on 9 weekends of trading out of 52!

every major sport thrives on its big game / international programme, but the RFL must be the only organisation who manage to f*c* that up as well!!

The attendances at the world cup were shameful, yes you can't hold a gun to peoples heads and make them attend, but they went for the safe option, playing games on the M62 corridor which were very poorly attended.

the Tri-Nations and the the Four Nations were great income streams for the game, and very successful, so why haven't those been reintroduced in non-world cup years?

the magic weekend is a staple of the RL calendar, so again what's the logic in removing a key event, one much loved by supporters in favour of what???

Absolute clowns running the game into the ground and its about time clubs started to be more public in their criticism 

I think its a sad indictment of the clubs allowing the RFL to get into this state to start with as they should have got together after big Nigel left and was replaced with Ralph Rimmer as CEO and demanded change as neither were up to the job - although Rimmer did have a more difficult task as his hands were financially tied - hence his appointment as the cheapest option I suppose.

This deal with IMG smacks of desperation, which begs the question - are the RFL staff up to the job, and have some of them been there for so long that they are merely going through the motions as they seemingly have very little to offer as the game as a whole.

Clubs will always put self interest first at any level, but strong management is required to make difficult decisions for the overall health of the game.

All clubs have had their central funding cut, but as is the case whenever funding is involved, its always the people who need it most who are the ones to suffer most. 

The current RFL hierarchy are spineless and have allowed themselves to be controlled by a handful of Super league clubs to the detriment of the remaining clubs.

The game appears to be in a similar position to the 1970's - more or less bankrupt - both financially and bereft of ideas and something needs to happen before the game below super league level just withers and dies a slow death.   

 

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2 minutes ago, Griff said:

Maybe Thunder need to look a bit closer to home. The attendances are more than respectable, especially for a team winning so few games. Better than Batley, for instance, who are often held up as an example of solid financial management. Why are Thunder in trouble?

We can only guess but a lot was pumped into the full time year. We have now football back on the map with the Saudis and seemingly women’s football team at Kp under nufc is growing big decent attendances. There was a rumour last year owner of thunder said thunder were propping the ground up. Falcons will always remain the bigger of the two but because relegation hasn’t been at play in union then falcons have survived without having to even spend big. Can see this happening also with img structure. Clubs will not bother spending if there miles off and can’t go up on performance wins

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8 hours ago, paul hicks said:

if we want to expand with any hope, it's not so much a list of cities as a list of people with the money to invest which is most important.

every time a club starts up it has enough money to last a season if its lucky and then more often than not just struggles on until it fails. what's needed is a lot of money been invested into a club for 5 years minimum better still 10 years.

look to Australia to see how they bring clubs through always well-funded and not just for a couple of years.

of course, it will never happen here as most clubs will moan if one club get 10 quid more than another in funding. we need new clubs to expand the game as its obvious that long established cubs have just gone from failure to ruin year on year.

just look at the atts of many clubs that have been around for a hundred years yet struggle to reach 1,500 for a game and quite often can't even reach 500 yet still pretend they are Professional just because they did well 50 years ago or more.

perhaps less clubs but better funded is the way forward.

But we do less clubs less funded

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It is shameful the way Rugby League is run in this country. Too much self interest by the top clubs, yet these same clubs are only too happy to go and cherry pick the talent that some of the so called lesser clubs produce. Marketing is a joke, I go back to the Summer Bash held at York, absolutely nothing around the town or even near the stadium to let people know it was on, if you didn’t know you wouldn’t know. The big money spinners were always the tests against Australia and to a lesser extent New Zealand, Test Matches and club games against the tourists always brought good numbers in. The Aussie clubs now don’t like releasing their players to play us, they would rather play against emerging southern hemisphere countries, namely the pacific islands and PNG. The international board should insist that they release players for ALL international games but they won’t because the big money is down under. When Super League started it was supposed to be the saviour of our great game, sadly I think the opposite is true, barring the clubs in Super League the rest of the family have been cast aside and left to their own devices, when really it is those clubs that need the extra financial support. I really feel for the Thunder fans and those at Skolars, West Wales and many others that have sadly left the semi pro ranks. We are worse for it. 

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7 hours ago, nadera78 said:

Despite the handwringing on here the truth is most RL fans couldn't give a monkey's about clubs outside the heartlands. In fact, many of them actively dislike these clubs. 

In the end, you get what you want.

I think you've hit the nail on the head here. Many people might not say it out loud but they're thinking that this means a bigger slice of the pie for their club (who are after all, a proper RL club unlike these newcomers) 

Sad but easily seen coming. 

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Statement from Newcastle is out. Hints at blame for the RFL for L1 being a poor option and a lack of support for regional development. Can only assume the NE academy goes.

The retreat to the M62 is well and truly on. Can only assume there is a strategy somewhere that says RL will best survive in the UK as a niche, regional pastime and that the RFL has swallowed this whole.

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Do any of the club's fans know if the owner offered to step back and hand the club over to a new board/fans group before pulling the plug.

The way the fans restarted Gateshead after 2000 was great and I really hope they can rally and do something similar now.

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