Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

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Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Recwatcher16 on Wed 05 Sep 2018, 8:05 am

First topic message reminder :

The deal seems cheap to me but a sign of things to come and as always the devil is in the detail of whether the clubs maintain any voting rights against a 51% share.
I can't imagine the RFU are too happy about it but the sooner the game is returned to the power of the domestic fan the better and the jamborees at Twicks can remain just that...jamborees.

www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/45417946


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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 06 Sep 2018, 5:24 pm

How has this gone onto another league discussion?

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by The Oracle on Thu 06 Sep 2018, 5:52 pm

Because it can.
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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Brendan on Thu 06 Sep 2018, 7:34 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:How has this gone onto another league discussion?

Might be my fault for saying that regionalism can work.

On the attendance figures, if the clubs were doing so well the Union would not have taken the action they needed.  As it was there were a few teams who had all the money and all the players and ran up big scores against everyone else.  If attendances were so good they all could of funded their teams but weren't and many were struggling financially.
Then take account the amount the clubs charged to get these attendances. If the regions charged £5 now for a ticket they would get bigger crowds.

Soccer in Ireland at club level use to get over 20k for the big games in the 60s & 70s. I don't think anyone would claim that soccer in Ireand could get close to that now. Times have changed and the past is stuck there.  We can look at the most anti-regional team of Ponty.  How have they progressed since 2002.  Taking into account that rugby in Wales is tribal and they still.play all same teams they must be showing those regions how to get big crowds.

From WOL (The fountain of knowledge)
Average since being formed in 2003 all competions (highest season)
Blues 7,290 (15,108 08/09)
Dragons 5,323 (6,201 13/14)
Ospreys 7,900 (10,227 08/09)
Scarlets 7,612 (9,655 11/12)

From indo.co.uk
"It’s testament to the way Pontypridd have been managed that they’re still as good as it gets in the Welsh club game: Premier Division champions for the past four years. But that counts for far less than it once did. Professionalism began the dreadful diminution of clubs like this, where 10,000 once flocked to see the famous black and whites and nurse a common enmity towards Cardiff"
I would take it from the article that for Ponty's biggest game they got 10k for a one off not the average across the whole season.. I was expecting more for their biggest game (expected 20k the way it's talked about). So maybe we aren't remembering the past as it waz

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by LordDowlais on Fri 07 Sep 2018, 8:24 am

The Oracle wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
The Oracle wrote:From your favourite source:

https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/rugby/rugby-news/every-welsh-rugby-regions-average-14617136.amp

Thats the regions average.

I am looking for the clubs average before regionalism.

Anywhere from 1990-2000 would be nice. Very Happy

Sorry, thought you meant regions.

A bit fiddly, but you’d need to look at Cardiff RFC’s season 1999/2000 on this link (use the slider at the top to get the right year) and then click into each home game to see the attendance.

http://www.cardiffrfc.com/Matches/FixturesAndResultsIn/2000

Unless I am missing something, I cannot find the attendances on that either. chin

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 07 Sep 2018, 11:36 am

Who cares. Wales fans want to watch on TV not at the ground. It's not going to impact on the offer for the prem.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by The Oracle on Sat 08 Sep 2018, 8:37 am

LordDowlais wrote:
The Oracle wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
The Oracle wrote:From your favourite source:

https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/rugby/rugby-news/every-welsh-rugby-regions-average-14617136.amp

Thats the regions average.

I am looking for the clubs average before regionalism.

Anywhere from 1990-2000 would be nice. Very Happy

Sorry, thought you meant regions.

A bit fiddly, but you’d need to look at Cardiff RFC’s season 1999/2000 on this link (use the slider at the top to get the right year) and then click into each home game to see the attendance.

http://www.cardiffrfc.com/Matches/FixturesAndResultsIn/2000

Unless I am missing something, I cannot find the attendances on that either. chin

Sorry LD, I was looking at the 2000/2001 and 2001/2002 seasons. Doesn’t seem to list them before that.
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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by BamBam on Mon 10 Sep 2018, 8:00 pm

https://www.rugbypass.com/news/the-inherent-risk-that-goes-to-the-very-heart-of-the-premiership-deal/

Good analysis of the offer, pros and cons

I'm truly stunned to read that Bruce Craig wants more money

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Poorfour on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 10:33 am

Exiledinborders wrote:
Brendan wrote:It is true that currently the players are contracted but if there was a breakaway league a lot of those contracted would be null and void.  The RFU pay the players good money for representing them 22k per match as a side job
I doubt any players have contract terms that end the contract should the league break away from the RFU.  If there was a break then the RFU would have no players. They could seek to centrally contract players as their contracts expire but they will only be able to get players in dribs and drabs. What are they going to do with these players until they have enough to form a few teams?

As for the RFU setting up regions I cannot see them succeeding in competition with established clubs.  Let's say they create an East Midlands regional team. How successful will that be competing with Leicester and Northampton?  Where would they play? They would have to rent a football ground and be at a great financial disadvantage.

The clubs have the players and the RFU has to accept that. Given that the other unions will not play against a breakaway national team the RFU has the ability to bring in income from internationals that the clubs cannot access. The clubs have to accept that. The RFU and clubs will have to continue to work in partnership whether they like it or not.  Currently it works fairly well.

Top players have clauses in their contracts that allow them to renegotiate or leave on change of DoR or relegation, and a smart contract lawyer would phrase the latter so that any material change of league would give the players options. It will also be pretty standard for EQPs to have a clause explicitly allowing them to contract with the RFU and prohibiting the club from restricting that. So if the RFU got its act together, it should be able to retain the services of at least the players on the England radar. Though as they say in Sparta, "if".

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Kingshu on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 10:40 am

Instead of paying for player release etc and fighting with teams in club V Country rows, could the RFU not buy the 51% instead?

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by LondonTiger on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 10:43 am

Owen Slot - The Times wrote:
Selling Rugby’s Gallagher Premiership is a risk – doing nothing is even riskier

The 13 owners of the Gallagher Premiership have a poor record of agreeing on anything. The characters we are talking about are mostly pugnacious males of the alpha variety; their meetings have a history of being so disputatious that some owners often send along their chief executives in their stead. They will all be in attendance today, though, as you would expect, because there is £275 million on the table, a sum that is likely to focus minds and raise the temperature even higher than normal.

However, they will not accept the offer from CVC Capital Partners, the private equity firm that has tabled a bid for 51 per cent of the company. Bruce Craig, the silverback of the club owners, does not want to accept it and, although he can bury the deal on his own, he is not alone. He is joined by Simon Orange, the Sale Sharks owner. It is understood that Bristol Bears and Exeter Chiefs are agnostic too.

Some owners are desperate to take the money because their businesses are in dire need of it and here, already, we have a problem. Of the aforementioned others, Exeter are in annual profit and so doing quite nicely on their own, thank you, while Craig, Orange and Stephen Lansdown, the Bristol owner, are wealthy enough that, when offered a £17 million windfall, it doesn’t really raise the pulse.

That will be one of the problems when the owners gather for their special meeting to decide their financial future. They have different priorities. For that reason, do not expect the CVC deal to die a quick death. Unanimity is required to vote it in and, while there is no chance of that, there is life in this yet.

At the very minimum, CVC will be asked to raise its offer. Craig claims to have an alternative deal on the table already, but even without that, CVC is not the only player. Since The Times broke the story of CVC’s offer last week, what was, in effect, a three-page free advertisement for the Premiership sale has attracted a number of other interested potential buyers. If the Premiership can then take this to an auction with one party bidding against another, it really is on the right track.

It is likely, then, that CVC will have to do some work to stay in the game. It will be asked to go and talk to some of the clubs so that they can understand better the intentions of the acquisition. Some clubs are astonished that CVC was not invited to present to the group today. That would have fast-forwarded the process.

To try and sell the deal, CVC is being proactive. Its best-known previous involvement in sport was its decade of ownership in Formula One, so it has offered to make introductions between the Premiership clubs and the Formula One teams. The question for the clubs is not how happy — or otherwise — those F1 teams were, but why CVC is so interested in what is, in private equity terms, a pipsqueak of a business. The last fund that CVC raised in Europe, 16 months ago, was €15 billion (about £13.36 billion) with average investments of about £700 million. CVC is a big boy, in this story, playing around for a small deal. Why?

And why now? All the talk is of the potential value of TV rights, yet the reality is that TV rights in sport are not rocketing at all, at least not in rugby. The big hike for English club rugby was when BT and Sky were going head to head, but Sky appears to be making a rapid withdrawal from the stage and industry observers wonder about BT’s future because Gavin Patterson, the chief executive who drove the march into sport, is to leave.

These are concerning times for the RFU, too, whose TV deal with Sky is soon to be renegotiated. It is reviewing all its rights and looking at how to package itself up as a brighter sell. Tighten your belts.

So, yes, the talk is all of Amazon Prime and YouTube, but the new players haven’t yet played a shot that is likely to influence rugby. Yet CVC sees huge growth?

CVC would not be messing around with a £275 million bid unless it could see better than triple returns on its investment. Conversely, even if it has been undervalued at £275 million (for half the shareholding), there is little to suggest that the Premiership will turn out to be the sale of the century.

The club owners should not, therefore, be contemplating a deal with CVC until they understand better where their new “partner” wants to drive the future. However, the chances are that the minority of the owners — Craig, Orange, and maybe Tony Rowe of Exeter and Lansdown of Bristol — will divert the group away from private equity. They regard losing control as the big danger and, no matter how reasonable CVC’s intentions, once they engage with private equity, they have started down a road of no return.

Conversely, the one service that CVC, or any PE firm, could bring would be a decision-making process. The very problem that the Premiership faces is the 13 shareholders and their inability to agree. This year, they were on the point of voting through ring-fencing and the end of promotion/relegation and they changed their minds. Indecision, though, is costly. If CVC, or whoever, had 51 per cent, commercial decisions would require one vote rather than a committee. Then they could really start moving.

The CVC rejecters do not want to give away a controlling stake in the Premiership — and rightly so. However, their big challenge is to bring in another strategic partner on a minority shareholding because any new investor would have to buy into the idea of this warring committee and hope that, somehow, it would win a few battles in the process.

What we know for sure is that the Premiership desperately needs some investment. Yet what it needs, too, is unanimity at board level to achieve that.

It is a huge risk to sell out to private equity. It feels too great a risk. But the greater risk would be to carry on disagreeing and end up doing nothing.


While in previous editions of the paper Ben Kay was pushing for the RFU to buy the stake. Something may well happen, but what the consequences are will take a while to materialise.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by LondonTiger on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 10:47 am

Kingshu wrote:Instead of paying for player release etc and fighting with teams in club V Country rows, could the RFU not buy the 51% instead?

Which is the exact point Ben Kay has been making - of course PRL's stakeholders would be looking for a lot more from the RFU than just a one off payment should such a purchase take place. They would perhaps look at the new PRL running all professional rugby in the country with it then giving money to the amateur game.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by SecretFly on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 11:27 am

This doesn't look good! Timed Pit Stop breaks for the players? Award winning medic teams who can throw an injured player on a stretcher quicker and ship him off the field faster? Players that can refuel from the water bottle in under 2 seconds?

Exciting!

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by SecretFly on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 11:39 am

LondonTiger wrote:
Kingshu wrote:Instead of paying for player release etc and fighting with teams in club V Country rows, could the RFU not buy the 51% instead?

Which is the exact point Ben Kay has been making - of course PRL's stakeholders would be looking for a lot more from the RFU than just a one off payment should such a purchase take place. They would perhaps look at the new PRL running all professional rugby in the country with it then giving money to the amateur game.

???

Stakeholder's looking for RFU to assume less power for more investment?

or..... as your last line suggests - RFU rebranding to that new 'PRL' name (whatever that amalgamation name might be) and taking back full control of professional rugby in the process?  

51% is 51%.   You don't - as a minority stakeholder - demand that the majority stakeholder relinquishes admin control of the company he's just majority purchased from you.  The only reason a majority stakeholding is sought is to increase leverage and influence over decisions; not the other way round.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by The Oracle on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 11:55 am

FFS, can we please get this back on topic and discuss the Welsh regional attendances please?!

Crying or Very sad
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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by LondonTiger on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 3:19 pm

SecretFly wrote:
LondonTiger wrote:
Kingshu wrote:Instead of paying for player release etc and fighting with teams in club V Country rows, could the RFU not buy the 51% instead?

Which is the exact point Ben Kay has been making - of course PRL's stakeholders would be looking for a lot more from the RFU than just a one off payment should such a purchase take place. They would perhaps look at the new PRL running all professional rugby in the country with it then giving money to the amateur game.

???

Stakeholder's looking for RFU to assume less power for more investment?

or..... as your last line suggests - RFU rebranding to that new 'PRL' name (whatever that amalgamation name might be) and taking back full control of professional rugby in the process?  

51% is 51%.   You don't - as a minority stakeholder - demand that the majority stakeholder relinquishes admin control of the company he's just majority purchased from you.  The only reason a majority stakeholding is sought is to increase leverage and influence over decisions; not the other way round.

RFU payed 225m for player access in the agreement ending this season. So a payment of £275m would not be great for clubs if the player release payment ended.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by BamBam on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 3:21 pm

It would be rather amusing if the RFU took control of players and access .. just imagine the foot stamping and toys being launched from the pram some of our friends across the Severn bridge about yet more Union control Laugh

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Kingshu on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 3:27 pm

The RFU must be kicking themselves paying 225 m for player release when they could have got a 51% share and just demanded it instead.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by RugbyFan100 on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 3:31 pm

isn't the £225m that CVC wanted to pay - for the league though. The rights to income and payments to a competition. Not to buy the clubs outright.

So any player release guarantee talk is nonsense.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Kingshu on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 3:42 pm

Is the RFU deal not with the league not with the individual clubs?

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by The Oracle on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 5:44 pm

BamBam wrote:It would be rather amusing if the RFU took control of players and access .. just imagine the foot stamping and toys being launched from the pram some of our friends across the Severn bridge about yet more Union control Laugh


Playing devil’s advocate, what is wrong with union control of players and access?!
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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by RugbyFan100 on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 6:00 pm

The Oracle wrote:
BamBam wrote:It would be rather amusing if the RFU took control of players and access .. just imagine the foot stamping and toys being launched from the pram some of our friends across the Severn bridge about yet more Union control Laugh


Playing devil’s advocate, what is wrong with union control of players and access?!


Too much control of players
Best players will play less in the league and more at test level
Players could be sold / moved to other teams to better the national team instead of the league
Players / teams playing against each other could skew results and devalue league as the teams would be owned by the same organisation
Teams could be told to only employ overseas players in particular positions to strengthen level above pro domestic rugby instead of strengthening the league
Players would be refereed by their colleagues
Lack of citings for offences when colleagues play against each other



All sounds rather familiar actually.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by The Oracle on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 6:03 pm

RugbyFan100 wrote:
The Oracle wrote:
BamBam wrote:It would be rather amusing if the RFU took control of players and access .. just imagine the foot stamping and toys being launched from the pram some of our friends across the Severn bridge about yet more Union control Laugh


Playing devil’s advocate, what is wrong with union control of players and access?!


Too much control of players
Best players will play less in the league and more at test level
Players could be sold / moved to other teams to better the national team instead of the league
Players / teams playing against each other could skew results and devalue league as the teams would be owned by the same organisation
Teams could be told to only employ overseas players in particular positions to strengthen level above pro domestic rugby instead of strengthening the league
Players would be refereed by their colleagues
Lack of citings for offences when colleagues play against each other



All sounds rather familiar actually.


I was hoping to hear it from an English fan!
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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 6:21 pm

You could say some of those hold true. Players and teams playing against each other is bull. As is refs not acting in a professional manner. In both cases because people are paid to do thir jobs. I'm sure we're all in jobs or have been where you have to hold people in your organisation to accept for a number of things. Lack of citing well you have the rfu doing that for English players now and generally very fair. Much more so than other unions. This should all be in the hands of wr.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by BamBam on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 7:00 pm

The Oracle wrote:
BamBam wrote:It would be rather amusing if the RFU took control of players and access .. just imagine the foot stamping and toys being launched from the pram some of our friends across the Severn bridge about yet more Union control Laugh


Playing devil’s advocate, what is wrong with union control of players and access?!

I'm indifferent to it, primarily being an England fan rather than having any huge affiliation to a club side

I was referring mainly to the likes of RugbyFan100 who have strong views on the subject

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by St John The Enforcer on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 7:19 pm

RugbyFan100 wrote:
The Oracle wrote:
BamBam wrote:It would be rather amusing if the RFU took control of players and access .. just imagine the foot stamping and toys being launched from the pram some of our friends across the Severn bridge about yet more Union control Laugh


Playing devil’s advocate, what is wrong with union control of players and access?!


Too much control of players
Best players will play less in the league and more at test level
Players could be sold / moved to other teams to better the national team instead of the league
Players / teams playing against each other could skew results and devalue league as the teams would be owned by the same organisation
Teams could be told to only employ overseas players in particular positions to strengthen level above pro domestic rugby instead of strengthening the league
Players would be refereed by their colleagues
Lack of citings for offences when colleagues play against each other



All sounds rather familiar actually.

I think he meant what are the BAD things about it.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by The Oracle on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 8:17 pm

BamBam wrote:
The Oracle wrote:
BamBam wrote:It would be rather amusing if the RFU took control of players and access .. just imagine the foot stamping and toys being launched from the pram some of our friends across the Severn bridge about yet more Union control Laugh


Playing devil’s advocate, what is wrong with union control of players and access?!

I'm indifferent to it, primarily being an England fan rather than having any huge affiliation to a club side

I was referring mainly to the likes of RugbyFan100 who have strong views on the subject


I was hoping for a good reason why England haven’t gone the way of Ireland, NZ, etc. Is there something wrong with that model? I guess my reason for the question was to wonder whether those ‘across the Severn Bridge’ have a point and whether English fans would want to be in the same situation?

I failed miserably in my attempt to draw it out Laugh


Last edited by The Oracle on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 10:04 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 11 Sep 2018, 9:20 pm

Because it's recognised that club and internationals should be a partnership both benefiting from each other. It also respects the history of the club's amd repects a lot of fans wishes.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Exiledinborders on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 9:14 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Because it's recognised that club and internationals should be a partnership both benefiting from each other. It also respects the history of the club's amd repects a lot of fans wishes.
I agree.

Many people seem to think that the whole purpose of the rugby union structure is just produce a good national team. It is not. All levels of the game have a value to the people playing and watching from the lowliest club through the professional game and then internationals. The international game is the icing on the cake - not the cake itself.


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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by LondonTiger on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 9:55 am

Exiledinborders wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Because it's recognised that club and internationals should be a partnership both benefiting from each other. It also respects the history of the club's amd repects a lot of fans wishes.
I agree.  

Many people seem to think that the whole purpose of the rugby union structure is just produce a good national team. It is not. All levels of the game have a value to the people playing and watching from the lowliest club through the professional game and then internationals.  The international game is the icing on the cake - not the cake itself.


Arguably the cherry on the icing on the cake?

Cake- Community game
Icing - Professional game
Cherry - International


All Premiership clubs have had one home fixture so far, with an aggregate attendance across the 12 games in excess of 150,000 people. While with away support there is some level of double counting, these numbers will be replicated (and exceeded) across another 10 home fixtures. A lot of people to throw under the bus if we choose to opt for regionalisation purely to support the international game.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by BamBam on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 10:05 am

The Oracle wrote:
BamBam wrote:
The Oracle wrote:
BamBam wrote:It would be rather amusing if the RFU took control of players and access .. just imagine the foot stamping and toys being launched from the pram some of our friends across the Severn bridge about yet more Union control Laugh


Playing devil’s advocate, what is wrong with union control of players and access?!

I'm indifferent to it, primarily being an England fan rather than having any huge affiliation to a club side

I was referring mainly to the likes of RugbyFan100 who have strong views on the subject


I was hoping for a good reason why England haven’t gone the way of Ireland, NZ, etc. Is there something wrong with that model? I guess my reason for the question was to wonder whether those ‘across the Severn Bridge’ have a point and whether English fans would want to be in the same situation?

I failed miserably in my attempt to draw it out Laugh

I can see the benefits of a regional type set up, but I recognise the history and rivalry that exists in the club game - at the moment the balance seems right, with EQ players encouraged and the RFU paying for access

I think there should be more oversight and care with the "Elite" squad's playing time so they aren't being flogged, but ultimately they are paid by the club, and club fans should get to watch their players.

I don't know what the ideal set up is, and I'm glad its not my job to figure it out!

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by LondonTiger on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 10:26 am

There should be more care in how players are looked after. Cannot find it now but there was a story earlier this week about World Rugby denying entry to countries that do not sign up to their Player Welfare scheme. Their main issue was the workload in training and especially the amount of contact sessions held. Here we can point the finger firmly at England and Eddie's door. Once the season starts the players do minimal full contact training with their clubs (Dai Young was quoted end of last season that this was typically 45m).

The World Rugby statement was suggesting they feel that excessive training workload is leading to players entering internationalsexhausted and more prone to picking up injuries. This could almost have been aimed at Eddie and his "beast them in training" attitude.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by BamBam on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 10:44 am

Somewhat related - NFL teams are only allowed to do 14 full contact practices a season (17 week regular season)

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Poorfour on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 12:20 pm

The Oracle wrote:I was hoping for a good reason why England haven’t gone the way of Ireland, NZ, etc. Is there something wrong with that model? I guess my reason for the question was to wonder whether those ‘across the Severn Bridge’ have a point and whether English fans would want to be in the same situation?

I failed miserably in my attempt to draw it out Laugh

History.

When professionalism was announced, the RFU had the opportunity to buy into the clubs but instead (thinking it probably wouldn't take off) agreed a moratorium period... in which rich fans of various clubs stepped in to fund the transition to professionalism. By the time the RFU woke up to that, it was too late.

The issue now is that the club owners have generally sunk £20-30m each (or more) into their clubs, which explains why they are looking for a valuation much higher than CVC were offering. The RFU could probably fund a buyout if it really wanted to; it paid for the £80m redevelopment of the South Stand effectively out of petty cash. This would be a fair bit bigger, but the RFU would be able to borrow extensively.

I noticed today that the current PRL Chairman is Ian Ritchie, former CEO of the RFU. If anyone is in a position to broker a deal, it's him. I suspect the club owners might be willing to give up a degree of control in return for the investment that would help them get their clubs to sustainability. Mark Evans (ex Quins CEO) used to reckon that you need to be owning and filling a 15k stadium to be financially standalone - and of current clubs only Leicester are able to do that.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by BamBam on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 12:27 pm

Does anyone think that rugby will ever get to the point where attendances aren't the key driver of income?

Look at the Premier League, I've read something saying that Man Utd could play behind closed doors for a season and still have the 4th highest turnover in the league - obviously they're a unique case

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Poorfour on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 1:16 pm

BamBam wrote:Does anyone think that rugby will ever get to the point where attendances aren't the key driver of income?

Look at the Premier League, I've read something saying that Man Utd could play behind closed doors for a season and still have the 4th highest turnover in the league - obviously they're a unique case

That will only happen if we reach a point where TV audiences are approaching football levels. I can't see it happening any time soon given the blanket coverage of soccer at the moment.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Kingshu on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 1:29 pm

At tge present I think the RFU are making a bad deal the money they pay for player release is important to the clubs but it will reach a point where the clubs earn more and the RFU deal becomes less important and the clubs will hold sway in club v counrty. The RFU are better getting a 51% share as time goes on.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Recwatcher16 on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 2:32 pm

Can anyone think of a sport, professional or otherwise, where the ruling body of the sport owns the top tier of the sport, beyond a representative national team ? Then asked themselves why there aren't any ?
The RFU can run the sport with a set of membership rules - they should not own the sport. Call me old fashioned but that in terms of competition is a conflict, pure and simple.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Brendan on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 2:53 pm

Recwatcher16 wrote:Can anyone think of a sport, professional or otherwise, where the ruling body of the sport owns the top tier of the sport, beyond a representative national team ? Then asked themselves why there aren't any ?
The RFU can run the sport with a set of membership rules - they should not own the sport. Call me old fashioned but that in terms of competition is a conflict, pure and simple.

Does the GAA count.

You could say the NFL is owned by the governing body.
World Cup is owners by FIFA
Olympics by the IOC
Champions and Europa leagues by UEFA

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by BamBam on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 3:03 pm

I think amongst professional team sports that is probably true Recwatcher

NFL/NBA/MLB/NHL all have rich owners running the franchises
Football obviously is run by the club owners

Cricket may be the exception, with the ECB in England & Wales being the "administrator" of first class cricket, but it is made up of reps from each of the counties

Its only really individual sports (tennis, golf, darts etc) where the ruling body owns the majority of the events, eg the PGA/ATP/WTA tours, but even then the Slams are owned by the individual venues

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by SecretFly on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 4:57 pm

Ownership is ownership.  Conflicts of interest arise all the time no matter who the 'owner' is.  
The classic 'nothing-to-see-here' episode (when the PRL closed down on any publicity emanating from one or two of their 'members' not altogether following financial rules pertaining to the Aviva Premiership at the time) was a blunt demonstration of conflict of interest.  
The conflict being: - the desire to be seen to be fair to all members and participant teams in terms of rules but also the vested interest in sustaining confidence in the 'product' so that sponsors and backers don't get nervous and walk away from any bad publicity.  Be quiet, don't admit anything or talk about any shady dealings in public.

Indeed, you might go further and simply state that PRL basically then own the rulebook by which its individually owned participating teams must comply.  PRL is an admin company (ruling body)  - and who owns the ruling body?  The participating teams.  Rec's very problem in action.  

So the models.  All it comes down to is preferred model.  Don't try selling me that one is naturally more moral and less conflicted than the other.  I won't buy it.  PRL is virtually a union in all but name - any group of participating teams have an admin body that calls the shots by majority decision.  We have the Pro14. Teams in competition don't run by their own exclusive local rules  (well most of them don't  Whistle ) - private or not.  An Admin body is in other language a Union.  It's just semantics.

Now, some wandering investor coming in and offering big money for 51%?  That 51% is a controlling 51%.  The outside investor wants to control the product he/she/it has investing in.  So, the PRL members (and I specify members - the individual privately owned teams not the admin company)  -  are they willing to have a wandering investor come in and largely codify the Premiership to their will (including I'm sure trying to influence the very rules of the game itself) and yet we're led to believe that many club fans and privately owned rugby teams would be dead against a serious Rugby focused National Union taking up that 51% share?

Each National Union NEEDS a healthy club structure.  No Union wants to weaken the clubs/Provinces/Regions in their territory.  Can the same be said for the Clubs?  Do they really wish success on their National Union to shine a light on their shared sport at International level?  The indifference, distrust and veiled contempt seems to be always mostly coming from the Club structure and owners.

What are they so afraid of?  

The only honest conflict between club and International/Union in my mind is Money.... who gets it, who gets most of it, who controls it, who spreads it out, who decides where it gets spread out to.  So the only conflict between the Professional Club game and the Professional governance game is Greed.  There are no honest 'for-the-morality-of-the-game' reasons.  People will squawk about them, but I won't be believing them.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Recwatcher16 on Wed 12 Sep 2018, 5:26 pm

The PRL don't own the clubs Secret and the PRL isnt responsible for the sport either. The PRL membership takes a vote on issues as they occur. That is in no way the same and to compare to Sporting Bodies responsible for kids on a muddy patch up to National Stadiums also owning the top tier of the game, which is an unhealthy conflict. There is no comparison in the sporting world for that very reason.

Some clearly believe the health of the game has to be top down rather than bottom up. Its very like tax breaks for wealthy individuals and corporates will trickle wealth downwards to the general populace. That theory was discredited along time ago - Rugby Union appears to ignore that lesson.


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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by SecretFly on Thu 13 Sep 2018, 12:14 pm

Recwatcher16 wrote:

Some clearly believe the health of the game has to be top down rather than bottom up. Its very like tax breaks for wealthy individuals and corporates will trickle wealth downwards to the general populace. That theory was discredited along time ago - Rugby Union appears to ignore that lesson.


I'm confused there Rec.  Are you suggesting that the Clubs are the bottom feeders - the general populace?  The Unions are the 'wealthy individuals and corporates' whose wealth does not trickle 'down' to the club game(PRL)?

Is that the analogy you're making?

Because if it is I think many might argue that it's a good analogy but the other way round.  

Professional, Profit-concerned, limited private enterprises (PRL clubs) have no genuine concern for the grassroots (bottom).  They know its there but their only operational interest is in plucking players from a conveyor belt when those players become good enough to be in their team.  They either pluck from the local conveyor belt or stretch their arm out and pluck from the foreign conveyor belt.  
So you and others say that Union must pay for the services of Club owned players as nobody can be getting freebies in the modern professional age.  But of course kids/youngsters don't get paid by anyone - they just play... and who gives them the framework to play through their childhood on a muddy patch?  
So, the clubs put youngsters coming through on contracts.  Great.  They pay the player to play for them.  But do they pay for his education?  They take an apple from the tree but don't pay the tree for its job in creating the apple.

The bottom is the muddy patch where Union operates.  The corporate top is where super private clubs operate with their large sponsors and billionaire backers.

But again, maybe I'm simply misunderstanding your analogy.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Recwatcher16 on Thu 13 Sep 2018, 3:44 pm

Hi Secret, I am not surprised you are confused because you view the perspective (prejudice ??) through the prism of a Union topdown control ! My comment was that this restricts Unions with their resources when they own the top tier from their proper job of administering the game on the muddy patches.
You immediately assume the very top of the pyramid is the professional clubs, it isn't.
Living in Dublin you can stroll to Landsdown. I have no intention of travelling to London to watch the national team on a regular basis. The clubs also have far more links with schools and local clubs than perhaps you realise and so you only assume the picking players off the conveyor belt, at their convenience, to use your expression.
In any professional sphere there are winners and losers - thats life. I note the less is more phrase is starting to be bandied about again. That should apply to both clubs and Unions but my preference is leave the domestic game alone and have Tests in single figures but doubt it will happen...for obvious reasons.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by carpet baboon on Thu 13 Sep 2018, 4:24 pm

Yes winners and losers.
Second in the world , six nations, European champs, increasing participation, especially women, both men's and women's 7s improving year on year, clear pathways from schools/club academy age grade rugby, support for local clubs throughout the country, investment in schools, junior rugby.

Yup this top down structure is killing us.

Tell us all rec how bath did when they cheated the salary cap? Win much?

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Recwatcher16 on Fri 14 Sep 2018, 12:49 pm

carpet baboon wrote:Yes winners and losers.
Second in the world , six nations, European champs, increasing participation, especially women,  both men's and women's 7s improving year on year, clear pathways from schools/club academy age grade rugby, support for local clubs throughout the country, investment in schools, junior rugby.

Yup this top down structure is killing us.

Tell us all rec how bath did when they cheated the salary cap? Win much?

Ha! yes playing success can justify or mystify(?) structures and I'm sure the IRFU will get their chequebook out when Schmidt and Lancaster move on.
Suggest you refer to the Australian Union top down model, which is unravelling and the venom the clubs there have for their Union. All bets appear to hinge on the next tv deal which includes scrapping S15 conferences.

No doubt some will say that circumstances are not the same and the scale of french and english tv audiences for the 6N and ERC will continue to fund all levels of the game. I think that is probably true, to a certain extent, but time will tell.

World Rugby pushing for fewer Tests in the global calendar should be interesting, if it ever happens.

Your last point - evidence ?

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by carpet baboon on Fri 14 Sep 2018, 1:12 pm

Ok so the Aussies ballsed it up.
What about privately run sports teams? They are always ran fantastically well. Just ask London Welsh, two or three french clubs now treading water in the D2. Or look to all the club's who had big ideas backed up by moneyy men, untill they weren't and they plummeted.

But...different things work for different people, there is no one size fits all.
You have an issue with union's, fine. I have an issue with rich men who try and cheat to victory then bully everyone else to keep quite about it.

And evidence, well I can't show you any. But it's there, in plenty of detail. And it will all come out, all it takes is time.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Recwatcher16 on Fri 14 Sep 2018, 1:32 pm

How did the Aussies balls it up ?
For reference their last game against SA in a 52k capacity stadium had an attendance of 27k.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by SecretFly on Fri 14 Sep 2018, 1:43 pm

The Aussies balls it up coz their Union doesn't have the business acumen of the IRFU.

I suggest the IRFU buy out Rugby Australia - sort Australian Rugby out from top to bottom and then cream off ensuing profits back to Ireland.

What?...it's only biz. No emotion in biz Wink

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Recwatcher16 on Fri 14 Sep 2018, 1:57 pm

Yes Secret, long may your faith in Browne et al continue. The interesting time will come when it doesn't.
The Aussies have had to deal with too many factors outside their control in order to fund their top tier and have left the grassroots to wither.

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Re: Offer of £275M to buy 51% ownership of the Premiership from the ex-owners of F1

Post by Brendan on Fri 14 Sep 2018, 2:18 pm

SecretFly wrote:The Aussies balls it up coz their Union doesn't have the business acumen of the IRFU.  

I suggest the IRFU buy out Rugby Australia - sort Australian Rugby out from top to bottom and then cream off ensuing profits back to Ireland.  

What?...it's only biz.  No emotion in biz Wink

The IRFU tried to run Connacht like the Super teams are being done in Australia. Thankfully they sorted that out and as Rec points out did what any good union should do was fund the grassroots better while also providing jobs and hero's for aspiring kids (which Rec's solution couldn't provide). Having learned their lesson they have made Ulster improve structures at grassroots so that they could improve the professional level and get a better return on investment.

RA has run rugby in Australia like there was only the Super Rugby level so have acted more like the PRL type body blowing millions on current stars rather than paying less and building future stars. This is shown by the fact that the State with the 3rd highest number of clubs as no Super Rugby team because it was making a loss so cut it even though it has much worse consequences than malgamating Rebels and Brumbies

There are plenty of players the IRFU would not fund (including Sexton who is only home due to a private top up not IRFU money) because they build grassroots with the money nd have a max price for a player.

So if we have the professional game given all the money (that they aren't making, as every professional team in England and France would make bigger losses if they weren't getting subs. It for for access to player from the League not the club otherwise Sarries would be getting a much bigger pay out compared to any other team) and the union only funding grassroots you would end up with the RA situation. If you fund all levels on a basis of needs v return you get the IRFU/NZ model.

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