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Opinion

Project Big Picture – ‘Confident they would happily keep Mike Ashley at Newcastle United!’

2 weeks ago
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When the return of football fans was indefinitely postponed last month, it was clear that many clubs in the EFL and below would struggle to survive without help.

Since then, more and more people in the industry seem to be coming up with their own ways to ‘save football’.

We have seen various solutions put forward by Premier League clubs, most recently in the form of ‘Project Big Picture’.

‘Project Big Picture’ is a plan put forward by Liverpool and Manchester United to provide financial support for EFL clubs in exchange for absolute power for the ‘big six’ clubs. The plans would see nine Premier League clubs given special status and voting rights. Only six votes would be needed for a successful vote to pass and this would include such things as the appointment of the Premier League Chief executive and the ability to block a club takeover.

I am confident that they would happily keep Mike Ashley at Newcastle United!

It has also been suggested that these clubs will keep a larger percentage of Premier League wealth and the league would be reduced to 18 teams.

They are trying to justify this power grab by claiming that they would bail out the EFL and provide 25% of revenue to EFL clubs [ED: This is not new money, just taking the parachute payments off relegated clubs and spreading it around the EFL] but I very much doubt that would last. Clubs will also be able to claim back a percentage of costs for recent stadium redevelopments which would benefit Tottenham and Liverpool. Tottenham for example would be able to reclaim £125 million under the proposals.

The proposals have been supported by EFL Chairman Rick Parry who is, coincidentally, former CEO of Liverpool.

It has been increasingly clear that Premier League clubs are only interested in supporting the football pyramid if there is something in it for them. For example, Manchester City have been vocal for a while about introducing Premier League B Teams into the EFL and this was suggested again this week.

Fans have also felt the impact of the Premier League’s greed this week with the confirmation that almost half of live Premier League matches will move to Sky Box Office and BT Box Office for a price of £14.95 a match. If your club has 20 matches on PPV you will be paying almost £300 this season if you watch every match.

This is particularly tough for many Newcastle fans who continue to have money taken out of their accounts for season tickets they cannot use at the moment. The silence from the club on this is staggering but I expect nothing else from Mike Ashley and Newcastle United.

Unfortunately, Premier League clubs see us as customers rather than supporters. There are many great people who work within football clubs but the owners simply care about nothing more than making money for themselves.

So much for the beautiful game.

At a time when thousands of families are struggling to put food on the table. This is simply a disgusting move by greedy football clubs to get more money from you.

You can follow Kieran on Twitter @KJR90

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