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Post by Rinsure on Mon May 13, 2019 5:00 am

Sorry for linking to the Mail, but...

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/rugbyunion/article-7018963/Rugbys-financial-backers-Newcastle-talks-increasing-Premiership-13-teams.html


So there are talks happening to increase the size of the Prem, and not lose rugby's flagship outpost in the North East to the Championship.  Increase to thirteen in the first instance (possibly fourteen longer term), and the suggestion is a two-leg playoff for relegation - so not a ring-fencing.

Interesting that the Championship clubs are opposed BUT seems to suggest they can be bought off for the right price.


Last edited by Rinsure on Mon May 13, 2019 5:01 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : added the link!)

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Post by marty2086 on Mon May 13, 2019 5:22 am

How will that work though with scheduling? Does that add an extra weekend to the season and where does it go? Which impacts England and the salary cap too

How would it affect Europe too?

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Post by Welshmushroom on Mon May 13, 2019 5:45 am

How would funding work for the increase in teams in the league in the long term.  Adding more teams will reduce payments to the other 12 teams as the parachute payment the 13 team gets while relegated does not match what the 12 teams in the Premiership receive.

Add to that with the RFU recently stating they have overpaid substantially for access to players if stands to reason they will look to reduce the commitments to the 225 million 8 year deal they made back in 2016 which by my count wont reduce until 2024 but the articles on this seem to indicate RFU may even look to reduce this before hand.  Given this part of their payments already accounts to a little over 1.5 million per club and reductions here would almost certainly affect the quality of each squad.

My understanding here is that BT also believe they have overpaid and their 200 million 6 year deal is also ending in 2021.  That's another 2.75 million per club.  

And given the recent move of McCafferty leaving (no doubt knowing he has taken them as far as possible) and CVC having purchased a substantial amount of the rights for the Premiership its unclear to see if they can in fact increase their profit.  

Granted with big benefactors at the helm in the Premiership it is unlikely to impact their spending but it could potentially cripple clubs in the long term if these benefactors suddenly decide to bail.

Honestly I don't know how they would even fund the extra team long term without watering down the tournament in the process.

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Post by Rinsure on Mon May 13, 2019 5:47 am

I think there are more questions than answers at the moment.

Thirteen teams would mean a fallow week for someone each round, which would be an extra rest; great if yours falls in the middle of the season, but rubbish if it's the first or last weekend!

No idea on European competition... as to the salary cap question, well, who knows how each team will adapt to any revised proposal.

I think it's a wait-and-see scenario at the moment.

I think it's a bit, well, cheeky (for want of a better word) to change the rules at / after the end of the season. With all respect to Newcastle, everyone knew that whoever finished bottom was going down. To then be snatched back up - while great for Falcons and rugby in the NE in general - makes something of a mockery of the competition.

Wearing a Championship hat - I would welcome the retention of the carrot of promotion possibility, and I still believe the threat of relegation is an important drive for teams at the sharp end of the season. So no ring-fencing is also a good thing (although I'm sure it'll come in time).


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Post by GeordieFalcon on Mon May 13, 2019 6:43 am

I dont think we should be made an exception.

We have been awful all season (bar one or two decent results) and must pay the penalty.


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Post by RugbyFan100 on Mon May 13, 2019 6:45 am

Welshmushroom wrote:

My understanding here is that BT also believe they have overpaid and their 200 million 6 year deal is also ending in 2021.  That's another 2.75 million per club.  

.

Where did you read that?

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Post by marty2086 on Mon May 13, 2019 7:16 am

RugbyFan100 wrote:
Welshmushroom wrote:

My understanding here is that BT also believe they have overpaid and their 200 million 6 year deal is also ending in 2021.  That's another 2.75 million per club.  

.

Where did you read that?

This was reported widely at the time of the last tv deal, BT overpaid to gazump Sky

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Post by marty2086 on Mon May 13, 2019 7:19 am

Rinsure wrote:
Wearing a Championship hat - I would welcome the retention of the carrot of promotion possibility, and I still believe the threat of relegation is an important drive for teams at the sharp end of the season. So no ring-fencing is also a good thing (although I'm sure it'll come in time).

Is there a sense of resignation in England that rugby has grown as much at it ever will?

I get the sense in the game that the feeling is the current markets have been saturated and that's why there is a focus on the newer markets and exploiting them

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Post by Rinsure on Mon May 13, 2019 7:28 am

marty2086 wrote:
Rinsure wrote:
Wearing a Championship hat - I would welcome the retention of the carrot of promotion possibility, and I still believe the threat of relegation is an important drive for teams at the sharp end of the season. So no ring-fencing is also a good thing (although I'm sure it'll come in time).

Is there a sense of resignation in England that rugby has grown as much at it ever will?

I get the sense in the game that the feeling is the current markets have been saturated and that's why there is a focus on the newer markets and exploiting them

Good question. I think there is still scope to grow the game, and there are areas of the country with potential rugby markets as yet unrepresented in the top flight(s).

I think that were there to be investment in a stadium to support the Cornish Pirates, and give them scope to grow, there is the support there to "do an Exeter". Likewise I think that Yorkshire is under-represented at the moment, the only major club of Leeds / Yorkshire Carnegie are going part-time from next season - I don't think there's not the market there to support it, and Leeds / Yorkshire have a decent ground.

That's two areas off the top of my head, and I think there's plenty more to come. Birmingham feels unloved... are they predominantly Worcs fans?

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon May 13, 2019 8:07 am

Leeds/Yorkshire have continually failed to pull in crowds. Various reasons but foremost being the pre-eminence of Rugby League and teh tribal nature of Yorkshire cities. Calling the Leeds team (which was a merger of Headingley and Roundhay) Yorkshire does not really persuade guys from Sheffield, Rotherham and Doncaster to attend games as Leeds are the enemy and a mere name change does not make int inclusive. I would point to the Cricket 100 next season. There will be a team based in Leeds, ECB want to call it Leeds but the Yorkshire management have stated that would be a hindrance in trying to draw a crowd from outside the city. Even Joe Root (a Sheffield lad) has weighed in.

Not sure how viable Cornish Pirates would be as the local population is not exactly huge. Largest town in the county 22k population according to 2015 ONS data. Their stadium plans were not huge and they would struggle to be self-sufficient from just rugby income. Exeter break even because of their non-rugby income.

Birmingham arguably is under-represented, but Coventry is right on the doorstep, so could not see any real growth here.


Generally the clubs with the most loyal fan-base are those where there has been little competition from Football. Gloucester, Northampton, Bath, Quins have all been operating at 95% plus occupancy for years now. They can continue to grow organically but there is a ceiling.

Sale, Newcastle and Leeds are areas of massive population (once you include neighbouring towns) and really shoudl be able to attract more - but struggle to do so.

London should be an ideal market and it will be interesting to see what LI achieve when they move back to teh capital.

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Post by carpet baboon on Mon May 13, 2019 8:09 am

marty2086 wrote:
RugbyFan100 wrote:
Welshmushroom wrote:

My understanding here is that BT also believe they have overpaid and their 200 million 6 year deal is also ending in 2021.  That's another 2.75 million per club.  

.

Where did you read that?

This was reported widely at the time of the last tv deal, BT overpaid to gazump Sky

The sports media folk have often mentioned rumblings that some higher ups in BT are not happy with the amount they handed over, others have also mentioned that the PRL had told BT that they would be running the national team by now and give them exclusive Access.
First one I can sort of believe. The second one is a stretch as I don't think even the most egotistical media type would fork out millions on a promise like that.
Although it is true that a good few years back the PRL were privately (and on occasions very loudly) stating their intention to run all professional rugby in England, from the national team down, and leave the RFU with the grassroots and community game.

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Post by marty2086 on Mon May 13, 2019 8:23 am

LondonTiger wrote:
London should be an ideal market and it will be interesting to see what LI achieve when they move back to teh capital.

London was one market I was thinking about when asking about it all. When you have the champions and one of the best teams in Europe in the market and they are averaging less than 10k for league games at their own ground it's not great.

The averages across the Premiership and Championship shows only a small percentage of the population are attending games. It's a competitive market but when you have top level sport and it can only attract a fraction of a more expensive alternative I wonder what is rugby doing wrong?

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon May 13, 2019 8:39 am

It's just not football. It takes time to understand the rules so quite hard to just watch one game and get hooked.

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon May 13, 2019 8:44 am

Sarries pull in big crowds for the "special" games they lay on (43k this year at the former Olympic Stadium). I believe they have signed a deal with Spurs to play these games at the new White Hart Lane going forward.

The terms of the planning permission they got when they moved into their current ground capped the max capacity at 10,500. Current capacity is 10k and they sold out (or as good as) for the visits of Wasps, Worcester, Saints and Exeter. Limited incentive to grow the support base when you are so restricted in ability to grow. Then add in that I doubt even 1/20 Londoners would know who Owen Farrell was.

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon May 13, 2019 8:45 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:It's just not football. It takes time to understand the rules so quite hard to just watch one game and get hooked.

Indeed

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Post by tigertattie on Mon May 13, 2019 8:46 am

marty2086 wrote:How will that work though with scheduling? Does that add an extra weekend to the season and where does it go? Which impacts England and the salary cap too

How would it affect Europe too?

it would add two extra weekends to the season (a home game and an away game)
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Post by LondonTiger on Mon May 13, 2019 8:49 am

tigertattie wrote:
marty2086 wrote:How will that work though with scheduling? Does that add an extra weekend to the season and where does it go? Which impacts England and the salary cap too

How would it affect Europe too?

it would add two extra weekends to the season (a home game and an away game)

They would have to do away with the Piddly Poddly Cup (4 weekends) as every club would have two additional fixtures and two weekends when they were the "idle" team.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Mon May 13, 2019 8:50 am

LondonTiger wrote:Leeds/Yorkshire have continually failed to pull in crowds. Various reasons but foremost being the pre-eminence of Rugby League and teh tribal nature of Yorkshire cities. Calling the Leeds team (which was a merger of Headingley and Roundhay) Yorkshire does not really persuade guys from Sheffield, Rotherham and Doncaster to attend games as Leeds are the enemy and a mere name change does not make int inclusive. I would point to the Cricket 100 next season. There will be a team based in Leeds, ECB want to call it Leeds but the Yorkshire management have stated that would be a hindrance in trying to draw a crowd from outside the city. Even Joe Root (a Sheffield lad) has weighed in.

Not sure how viable Cornish Pirates would be as the local population is not exactly huge. Largest town in the county 22k population according to 2015 ONS data. Their stadium plans were not huge and they would struggle to be self-sufficient from just rugby income. Exeter break even because of their non-rugby income.

Birmingham arguably is under-represented, but Coventry is right on the doorstep, so could not see any real growth here.


Generally the clubs with the most loyal fan-base are those where there has been little competition from Football. Gloucester, Northampton, Bath, Quins have all been operating at 95% plus occupancy for years now. They can continue to grow organically but there is a ceiling.

Sale, Newcastle and Leeds are areas of massive population (once you include neighbouring towns) and really shoudl be able to attract more - but struggle to do so.

London should be an ideal market and it will be interesting to see what LI achieve when they move back to teh capital.

This is and will always be a massive football city. The 53000 stadium is bang in the city centre, whilst Kingston park is a bit out of the way.
Rugby is getting a higher profile, but many football fans loathe the idea of rugby games like the games over the weeked being played at their beloved St James Park.

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon May 13, 2019 8:53 am

For Falcons to grow GF, I suspect they would have to be appealling to the whole of Tyneside, Wearside and Teesside. However then you also add in competition from Sunderland and Boro footy clubs.

Rugby is a minority sport, and in all honesty has probably reached saturation point already in England.

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Post by TightHEAD on Mon May 13, 2019 9:05 am

I'm sorry Newcastle but you knew the rules at the start of the season!
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Post by GeordieFalcon on Mon May 13, 2019 9:09 am

TightHEAD wrote:I'm sorry Newcastle but you knew the rules at the start of the season!

Thats irrelevant when money comes in to play....

But i agree we should be relegated. Only fair.

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Post by RugbyFan100 on Mon May 13, 2019 9:17 am

carpet baboon wrote:
marty2086 wrote:
RugbyFan100 wrote:
Welshmushroom wrote:

My understanding here is that BT also believe they have overpaid and their 200 million 6 year deal is also ending in 2021.  That's another 2.75 million per club.  

.

Where did you read that?

This was reported widely at the time of the last tv deal, BT overpaid to gazump Sky

The sports media folk have often mentioned rumblings that some higher ups in BT are not happy with the amount they handed over,  others have also mentioned that the PRL had told BT that they would be running the national team by now and give them exclusive Access.
First one I can sort of believe. The second one is a stretch as I don't think even the most egotistical media type would fork out millions on a promise like that.
Although it is true that a good few years back the PRL were privately (and on occasions very loudly) stating their intention to run all professional rugby in England, from the national team down, and leave the RFU with the grassroots and community game.

Ah right. I haven't seen any of that. I only saw that they were concerned that overpaid for the Champions League. And lets be honest, the money BT paid for rugby in comparison with the Champions League is pocket change.

I can't see how anybody other than a Union can run a tier one national team. World Rugby don't allow it for a start do they?

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Mon May 13, 2019 9:36 am

LondonTiger wrote:For Falcons to grow GF, I suspect they would have to be appealling to the whole of Tyneside, Wearside and Teesside. However then you also add in competition from Sunderland and Boro footy clubs.

Rugby is a minority sport, and in all honesty has probably reached saturation point already in England.

We already do have fans who come up from Wearside etc. But i think we'll always struggle to have a big capacity following. It just wont happen.

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Post by carpet baboon on Mon May 13, 2019 9:37 am

RugbyFan100 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:
marty2086 wrote:
RugbyFan100 wrote:
Welshmushroom wrote:

My understanding here is that BT also believe they have overpaid and their 200 million 6 year deal is also ending in 2021.  That's another 2.75 million per club.  

.

Where did you read that?

This was reported widely at the time of the last tv deal, BT overpaid to gazump Sky

The sports media folk have often mentioned rumblings that some higher ups in BT are not happy with the amount they handed over,  others have also mentioned that the PRL had told BT that they would be running the national team by now and give them exclusive Access.
First one I can sort of believe. The second one is a stretch as I don't think even the most egotistical media type would fork out millions on a promise like that.
Although it is true that a good few years back the PRL were privately (and on occasions very loudly) stating their intention to run all professional rugby in England, from the national team down, and leave the RFU with the grassroots and community game.

Ah right. I haven't seen any of that. I only saw that they were concerned that overpaid for the Champions League. And lets be honest, the money BT paid for rugby in comparison with the Champions League is pocket change.

I can't see how anybody other than a Union can run a tier one national team. World Rugby don't allow it for a start do they?

I believe you are correct in that.
But some have said the PRLs decision to announce there deal with BT for the euro comp without informing the RFU about it (I believe the story goes the RFU chairman at the time got congratulated on the deal the morning before it was announced by his french counterpart. Did not go down well apparently) was part of a plan to force the RFU to hand over more power to the PRL.
Talk was how the PRL told the RFU to back them in the deal or else. The RFU said go back to the table and compromise.
Again this story has come from a few media types who work in rugby, so can't say it's 100% fact, but makes for a good story

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Post by RugbyFan100 on Mon May 13, 2019 9:48 am

carpet baboon wrote:
But some have said the PRLs decision to announce there deal with BT for the euro comp without informing the RFU about it (I believe the story goes the RFU chairman at the time got congratulated on the deal the morning before it was announced by his french counterpart. Did not go down well apparently) was part of a plan to force the RFU to hand over more power to the PRL.
Talk was how the PRL told the RFU to back them in the deal or else. The RFU said go back to the table and compromise.
Again this story has come from a few media types who work in rugby, so can't say it's 100% fact, but makes for a good story

Good. Unions should have zero involvement in domestic competitions.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon May 13, 2019 10:02 am

You wanted the Welsh teams as part of the championship?

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Post by RugbyFan100 on Mon May 13, 2019 10:07 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:You wanted the Welsh teams as part of the championship?

Me? Good god yes.

Hope this doesn't go off topic now.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon May 13, 2019 10:09 am

Just am interesting position to be in!

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Post by RugbyFan100 on Mon May 13, 2019 10:12 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Just am interesting position to be in!

No brainer really. I don't see how this is relevant to the topic at all.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon May 13, 2019 10:21 am

It only had something to do with your comment. It's fine though if interesting!

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Post by LordDowlais on Mon May 13, 2019 10:23 am

RugbyFan100, please do not bite. OK

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon May 13, 2019 10:27 am

It's a forum. Question asked and answered.

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Post by carpet baboon on Mon May 13, 2019 10:29 am

RugbyFan100 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:
But some have said the PRLs decision to announce there deal with BT for the euro comp without informing the RFU about it (I believe the story goes the RFU chairman at the time got congratulated on the deal the morning before it was announced by his french counterpart. Did not go down well apparently) was part of a plan to force the RFU to hand over more power to the PRL.
Talk was how the PRL told the RFU to back them in the deal or else. The RFU said go back to the table and compromise.
Again this story has come from a few media types who work in rugby, so can't say it's 100% fact, but makes for a good story

Good. Unions should have zero involvement in domestic competitions.

Problem being under world rugby rules any league or competition played in has to be ratified by the associated unions of the teams participating.
So you can have no domestic rugby union competitions without the union

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Post by Kingshu on Mon May 13, 2019 10:41 am

The RFU were soft paying what they did for player access and after its done will have nothing for that money, whereas CVC for about the same money purchased 20% of PRL. RFU would have been better buying 20% and having a say in the squad make ups and running of the league.

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Post by RugbyFan100 on Mon May 13, 2019 10:59 am

carpet baboon wrote:
RugbyFan100 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:
But some have said the PRLs decision to announce there deal with BT for the euro comp without informing the RFU about it (I believe the story goes the RFU chairman at the time got congratulated on the deal the morning before it was announced by his french counterpart. Did not go down well apparently) was part of a plan to force the RFU to hand over more power to the PRL.
Talk was how the PRL told the RFU to back them in the deal or else. The RFU said go back to the table and compromise.
Again this story has come from a few media types who work in rugby, so can't say it's 100% fact, but makes for a good story

Good. Unions should have zero involvement in domestic competitions.

Problem being under world rugby rules any league or competition played in has to be ratified by the associated unions of the teams participating.
So you can have no domestic rugby union competitions without the union

The running of it. Not ticking the box.

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Post by RugbyFan100 on Mon May 13, 2019 11:01 am

Kingshu wrote:The RFU were soft paying what they did for player access and after its done will have nothing for that money, whereas CVC for about the same money purchased 20% of PRL. RFU would have been better buying 20% and having a say in the squad make ups and running of the league.

Why would PRL give away any of the league to the Union? The RFU are the very entity that PRL don't want to give control of the league to surely? The only possible scenario would be if the collective owners were in need of cash. But I can't see that happenning soon.

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Post by Welly on Mon May 13, 2019 12:52 pm

I can see Prem rugby going to Amazon once the BT contract is up.

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Post by tigertattie on Mon May 13, 2019 12:59 pm

Welly wrote: I can see Prem rugby going to Amazon once the BT contract is up.

As part of Prime? I'd love it if that happened!!!
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Post by Recwatcher16 on Mon May 13, 2019 6:03 pm

I can understand why CVC are looking to protect their investment with the PRL thirteen - they will undoubtedly have a five and maybe ten year plan. However if you only have thirteen stadiums there is only so much interest at the turnstile or tv that you can generate with a lack of further access.
The real decision is how to develop the Championship by giving access against the bigger clubs through a knockout competition. It will obviously be a slow process and one that should have started ten years ago but better late than never.
Team sport only grows from the bottom up, not the fools gold trickle down effect from elitist structures. Banning relegation is not the long term answer.

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Post by yappysnap on Tue May 14, 2019 1:29 am

13 teams just seema needlessly complicated.

Just make it 14 and have two conferences.

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Post by Brendan on Tue May 14, 2019 7:33 am

yappysnap wrote:13 teams just seema needlessly complicated.

Just make it 14 and have two conferences.

This could allow them to do a North and South Conference

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Post by LondonTiger on Tue May 14, 2019 7:36 am

yappysnap wrote:13 teams just seema needlessly complicated.

Just make it 14 and have two conferences.

The main reason will be that every extra team would dilute the average income.

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Post by Brendan on Tue May 14, 2019 8:08 am

LondonTiger wrote:
yappysnap wrote:13 teams just seema needlessly complicated.

Just make it 14 and have two conferences.

The main reason will be that every extra team would dilute the average income.

Could the 14th team as part of the going up not agree to not getting the extra income. Travel would be simillar travel to the championship but travel attendances should be up so should be happy with that. The downside is they wouldn't be able to field a strong team but not sure there are the players for a 14th strong teams.

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