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Great news for imminent Saudi PIF owners ahead of Newcastle United takeover as FFP rules further eroded

4 months ago
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Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules have been repeatedly put up as the biggest obstacle to the imminent new Saudi PIF owners after a Newcastle United takeover.

Claims that FFP would make it impossible for new ambitious owners to make rapid progress in reversing 13 years of Mike Ashley neglect.

As things stand, UEFA rules don’t allow clubs to lose more than 30m euros (approximately £26.8m) per season, averaged over any three year period.

When you say don’t allow, owners of a club CAN cover greater losses than that, but would not be allowed into the Champions League or Europa League.

The Premier League have their own rules on Financial Fair Play, with owners allowed to cover losses of up to £35m per season, once again averaged over any three year period.

Mike Ashley refusing to allow proper investment in the Newcastle squad, has actually meant that the imminent Saudi PIF owners would have extra wriggle room after a Newcastle United takeover, football finance expert Kieran Maguire believes the new NUFC owners could spend up to around £150m on new players in their first season, due to profits the club made in recent seasons.

In May, there was positive news on the Financial Fair Play front where the Amanda Staveley fronted bid was concerned.

The President of UEFA Aleksander Ceferin saying (see below) that due to the virus situation, they are going to relax the FFP rules: ‘Yes, we will adapt it and we think it’s important to adapt it because the situation for the clubs is not easy.’

Ceferin wouldn’t reveal the exact details but did say UEFA have been in talks with various leagues and clubs about the Financial Fair Play rules.

Whatever the exact details turn out to be, the big key thing will surely be that owners are allowed to put more money into their clubs to financially prop them up in these very difficult times.

Now I know that we live in the most moral of times these days (where Newcastle United and new owners are concerned anyway!) but the truth is that in football, any morals left the building long ago.

We have certainly never seen morality as a consideration for Mike Ashley these past 13 years, and if now Financial Fair Play rules are indeed relaxed and allow our imminent new owners to finance a quicker instant bounce back than expected, I’m all in favour.

Having watched what has gone on at clubs such as Chelsea, Man City and numerous others in recent times, why on earth should Newcastle fans feel any guilt at potentially being able to be back competing, far quicker than anyone thought would be possible.

Now on Monday (13 July 2020), the Saudi PIF bidders have been given significant further encouragement on the FFP front where a Newcastle United takeover is concerned.

The CAS (Court of Arbitration for Sport) have announced that Manchester City’s two year Champions League ban for breaking FFP rules has been overturned

The UEFA Club Financial Control Body had originally found that Manchester City had committed serious breaches of their Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations, by overstating sponsorship revenue between 2012 and 2016, as well as failing to cooperate in the investigation.

However, CAS have found that Man City ‘did not disguise equity funding as sponsorship contributions’ but upheld that the club did ‘fail to cooperate’ with UEFA.

The net result is no two years Champions League ban and instead a 10m euros (£9m) fine to pay. What a joke, the Man City owners will be celebrating this as a total victory, a real body blow to any remaining credibility for FFP rules. Paying a £9m fine is no punishment at all for them.

All NUFC fans need now is for the Newcastle United takeover to be announced.

It is now 95 days and counting since the NUFC seller and bidders passed the takeover to the Premier League.

President of UEFA Aleksander Ceferin speaking back in May 2020 to beIN SPORTS:

 Financial Fair Play (FFP):

“The [virus] situation is extraordinary.

“We will not pretend it’s not, so we will adapt the Financial Fair Play system, but the final decision in which direction we will do it is not brought yet [on how to do it has not been made yet].

“Yes, we will adapt it and we think it’s important to adapt it because the situation for the clubs is not easy.

“We are all in the same boat.

“It’s too soon to share details on how we will do it, but the clubs are included in the conversation and so are the leagues.”

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