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British and Irish League - its got to be the solution

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Post by stevetynant Tue 31 Dec - 20:54

I know there's a lot of obstacles to overcome but it just seems such an obvious solution to the disaster that is going to happen if everyone who has some inflluence in this current embargo doesn't pull in the same direction

My initial thoughts

At least 3 divisions - with promotion and relegation - if the Celtic Sides can't cut it in division 3 then probably they are best absorbed into their National leagues

Possibly a cup competition in the National leagues to decide 1 of 2 promotion places into the New Structure- the other place should be given to the English league champions simply because there are massively more of them.

The Italian sides absorbed into the lower French league to build again

France are big enough to survive on their own but could be brought into the fold by way of Euro competition annually.

TV Revenue should soar given the meaningful matches and structure on offer

It would secure rugby in Scotland and Ireland which will struggle if the Welsh regions jump ship to the Wanglo

It would secure rugby in Wales when the English sides come up with a better European solution and drop them from the Wanglo

It would provide a higher level of rugby for all sides especially in the division 1

Administered by the 6 Nations committee to ensure impartiality

It would secure the 6 Nations as a high quality rugby competition

It would give the fans high quality matches- lots of local derbies and incentives for putting out your best sides (promotion/relegation)


I realise the problem is then is the way the franchises are run - either by Unions or Club Owners which inevitably means the issue of money distribution but if we could come up with an equitable solution - surely its worth persevering with rather than the mess thats soon to befall us?

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Post by EWT Spoons Tue 31 Dec - 21:24

Can't see it happening.  How would you integrate the Pro 12 and the Aviva teams?  Who would go into the top flight and who would go into the other two divisions?  Whoever ends up out of the top division would be deeply unhappy with this and clearly wouldn't be in favour.

I see your thinking, but I think there would be far too many unhappy parties that it won't happen as very few would vote in favour of it.

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Post by TJ Tue 31 Dec - 21:39

The PRL will never go for it as half their top flight teams would have to go in the second tier. I actually like the current setup overall. England and France can sustain a pro league, no one else can so they are better together. A second tier pro 12 would be a good aim in the long run.

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Post by HammerofThunor Tue 31 Dec - 21:44

The solution is for the Welsh to get their collective Poopie together and sort out a suitable number of pro teams to play in the Pro12 (their only pro domestic teams). Then everyone to get their Poopie together and sort out a european competition that everyone is willing to play in. That's the solution.

Three divisions would be possible but it's always going to be unfair on whoever gets cut off, basically saying you don't much chance of pushing on.

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Post by Totallybiasedscarlet Tue 31 Dec - 21:50

HammerofThunor wrote:The solution is for the Welsh to get their collective Poopie together and sort out a suitable number of pro teams to play in the Pro12 (their only pro domestic teams). Then everyone to get their Poopie together and sort out a european competition that everyone is willing to play in. That's the solution.

Three divisions would be possible but it's always going to be unfair on whoever gets cut off, basically saying you don't much chance of pushing on.

+1  thumbsup 

It's not about a Pro12 or British or Anglo-Welsh per se. It's about agreement. That seems a very long way away at the moment.
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Post by stevetynant Tue 31 Dec - 21:50

Well the solution is for the Welsh to get their house in order and stay in the Rabbo and the English to see the greater good in Northern Hemisphere rugby and commit to the HC - But thats status quo and is not going to happen.

As for league positioning - is it too late for next year?- probably - but given enough notice each league could be advized that the top x places in each league would be given division 1 status for the following year and so on - would make a hell of a last season for both leagues.

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Post by HammerofThunor Tue 31 Dec - 21:58

If this is seriously going to be considered I expect it to take at least 5 years to sort out the details of. Probably aim for when the WRU have paid off the MS. Doing in a year or two is too soon. This would require a fundemental change the structure of English rugby. The change for the PRO12 sides isn't as large as they're just going into a slightly different version of what they're in now.

In fact, if you're going to ring fence and include all the British and Irish pro teams I would go for something more akin to the NFL structure. 32 teams in various confrences/divisions.

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Post by Shifty Tue 31 Dec - 21:59

You could simply have a 22 team league with the Celts and English.  

You have 22 weeks of league games and another 2 weeks for play offs, which totals 24 weeks.  

We have Europe which is 6-9 weeks depending on progression (6 weeks of pool games, 1 quarter final, 1 semi and  final).  

Then you have the LV cup which is 4-6 weeks depending on progession, (4 pool games, 1 semi final, and 1 final).

If you also take the 2 weeks you have for pre-season friendlies, then a 22 team Anglo-celtic league would fit into the existing season.  The same as the French Top 14. They dont have pre-season friendlies and their season starts in the mid week of August, as opposed to the first week of september like the Rabo and Aviva.

42 weeks of rugby, with a 10 week off season.  Any international players going on tour would start the season a little later as they do now.

Relegation would be easy to sort out, at the end of the season, simply take the head to head results of the english teams, and discount the celtic teams results.  Whichever english team finished bottom of the 12 team league table would face relegation provided the top championship team meets the promotion requirements.

All we need to do then is let RRW merge into PRL, and the Unions have to allow the new Aviva Premiership  to negiotiate their own tv deals and sponsorship.

It's actually the most sensible solution to the problem,:
The Rabo has no sponsor next season.
There is no heinaken cup next season
Bt want the rights to british club rugby.
According the RRW website, the rabo sky tv deal hasnt been signed yet.


Last edited by Shifty on Tue 31 Dec - 22:16; edited 2 times in total
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Post by stevetynant Tue 31 Dec - 22:03

Its definitely the way forward as far as I'm concerned but I completely agree its a probably a five year project by which time the horse will have well and truly bolted.

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Post by HammerofThunor Tue 31 Dec - 22:09

Just to expand on that.

Conference 1
Irish Division - Connacht, Leinster, Munster, Ulster
Welsh Division - Blues, Dragons, Ospreys, Scarlets
Scotland and North England - Glasgow, Edinburgh, Newcastle, AN OTHER
North England - Sale, Leeds, Rotherham, AN OTHER

Conference 2
London - Saracens, Harlequins, London Wasps, London Irish
South West - Cornish Pirates, Exeter, Bath, Bristol
Midlands - Leicester, Northampton, Worcester, Mosely
AN OTHER - some other teams

But you get the gist (yes I know Gloucester are missing).

Everyone players everyone in their division twice and some of the others on a rotating basis. At the end 1st in each division go into the cup playoffs (8 teams), 2nd go into plate (8 teams), etc.

The NFL have 17 normal games, around 8 home games (three less than now). Then there would be at least one play off game and up to 3. so that would be 18-20 games. Instead the playoff could be home and away up to the final so that would be 19-22 games.

Then we could also have an actual European cup that really is pan European as well.

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Post by stevetynant Tue 31 Dec - 22:13

Looks good other than the Midlands and Welsh should be swapped to allow for easier away fans travel in the first season

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Post by doctornickolas Tue 31 Dec - 22:20

I think if you are going to have a British and Irish league then you would have to take the top 6 from Rabo and Aviva as 'premiership 1' and then the bottom 4 Rabo, Bottom 6 Aviva and then maybe promote another 2 English.

2 leagues of 12 with promotion and relegation. May be good for England to get another 2 sides in a professional set up.

You could also go to 14 sides in each maybe if Wales or Scotland wish to add more professional sides.


Alternative for this would be, as Shift mentioned, one big 22 team league playing home OR away.

Rather than a league another alternative of course is to stay as Rabo and Aviva and maybe
have a British and Irish cup involving the top 4 or 8 finishers in each league.

Or on that theme the top 4 in each league go in to a B&I cup, next 4 in to a shield comp, and last 4 in to  a bowl comp much like the 7's rugby does.

There are loads and loads of possibilities and combinations.

Sell the whole damn lot to BT and lets get on with it.

Just please someone do something FFS !!

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Post by Shifty Tue 31 Dec - 22:28

HammerofThunor, you dont need conferences mate, a 22 team league fits into the existing season, without any rejigging.
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Post by Seagultaf Tue 31 Dec - 22:37

Shifty wrote:HammerofThunor, you dont need conferences mate, a 22 team league fits into the existing season, without any rejigging.

For the league to be meaningful, fixtures must be home and away, so 22 teams that's 40 league games plus 9 international weekends that's without any cup or European competitions, impossible!

Anglo Welsh proposal is based on 16 teams so 30 games plus internationals, no cup or euro games. Similar number of games to the existing season.

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Post by HammerofThunor Tue 31 Dec - 22:39

Shifty wrote:HammerofThunor, you dont need conferences mate, a 22 team league fits into the existing season, without any rejigging.

Sorry, but no way should the professional sides in the Championship be cut out completely. They need to be directly involved in any ring fencing of English teams.

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Post by Sin é Tue 31 Dec - 23:01

How long would it be before the English teams would start claiming that with the bigger population they deserve most the money, etc., etc?

I can see the attraction for the English clubs to have the Irish teams playing their teams over there with all the Irish people living over there, but I really can't see what it would do for Irish teams.

The thing I really like about the Heineken Cup is meeting different teams every year. After a while it would just get boring when you know you'd have to play the same teams every year.
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Post by Feckless Rogue Tue 31 Dec - 23:04

Given the money in the Top 14, maybe bunching together is the only way the British and Irish can attract enough sponsorship and TV money to compete with them. There'd be a hell of a lot of issues to sort out to make it work. Probably too many.

What about the Italians?
What about relegation?
What about the restricted playing time of large parts Irish,Welsh, Scottish squads?
What about the large amount of funding the Irish get from their union that others wouldn't have?

Surely it would take years to draw it all up. It would be give us some great matches though.
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Post by Feckless Rogue Tue 31 Dec - 23:08

Sin é wrote:The thing I really like about the Heineken Cup is meeting different teams every year.

That is true. I really like that too.

Sin é wrote:but I really can't see what it would do for Irish teams.

Money.

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Post by ScarletSpiderman Tue 31 Dec - 23:11

Feckless Rogue wrote:Given the money in the Top 14, maybe bunching together is the only way the British and Irish can attract enough sponsorship and TV money to compete with them. There'd be a hell of a lot of issues to sort out to make it work. Probably too many.

What about the Italians?
What about relegation?
What about the restricted playing time of large parts Irish,Welsh, Scottish squads?
What about the large amount of funding the Irish get from their union that others wouldn't have?

Surely it would take years to draw it all up. It would be give us some great matches though.


I have a feeling, that IF the regions stick with the WRU that it will be with a view to trying to set up a B&I league as soon as the Pro12 deal runs out. Apparently these sort of questions have been put forward to the WRU/RRW by fans.
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Post by Sin é Tue 31 Dec - 23:15

Feckless Rogue wrote:
Sin é wrote:The thing I really like about the Heineken Cup is meeting different teams every year.

That is true. I really like that too.

Sin é wrote:but I really can't see what it would do for Irish teams.

Money.


Not worth it. We'd be treated like Poopie by the PRL who would make the rules to suit themselves as they would control the BT money.
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Post by profitius Tue 31 Dec - 23:16

A British and Irish league won't work. The only way it would work is if England went regional and thats not going to happen.
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Post by Swperb Wed 1 Jan - 0:10

British and Irish PremiershipEuro Premiership
1POECCSaracens1POECCClermont
2POECCMunster Rugby2POECCCastres
3POECCNorthampton Saints3POECCToulon
4POECCUlster Rugby4POECCToulouse
5 ECCBath Rugby5 ECCStade Français
6ECCLeinster Rugby6ECCMontpellier
7ECCHarlequins7EPGrenoble
8ECCOspreys8EPRacing Métro  
9ECCExeter Chiefs9EPBordeaux-Bègles
10ECCGlasgow Warriors10EPBrive
11EPLeicester Tigers11EPPerpignan
12EPEdinburgh Rugby12EPOyonnax
13EPSale Sharks13EPBayonne
14EPScarlets14EPBiarritz
15RELESLondon Wasps15RELESBenetton Treviso
16RELESNewport Gwent Dragons16RELESZebre
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Post by Swperb Wed 1 Jan - 0:11

British and Irish ChampionshipEuro Championship
1PROEPGloucester Rugby1PROEPLyon
2POESEPCardiff Blues2POESEPPau
3POESEPNewcastle Falcons3POESEPAgen
4POESEPConnacht Rugby4POESEPLa Rochelle
5POESEPLondon Irish5POESEPNarbonne
6 ESWorcester Warriors6 ESBourgoin
7ESLondon Welsh7ESColomiers
8ESLondon Scottish8ESAurillac
9League Bowl (Single Elimination)Bristol9League Bowl (Single Elimination)Tarbes
10Rotherham Titans10Dax
11Cornish Pirates11Mont-de-Marsan
12Leeds Carnegie12Viadana
13Plymouth Albion13Calvisano
14REL*Moseley14I Cavalieri
15 Dev N. Wales Region15RELMogliano
16Dev Scottish Region16RELAlbi
* Last placed English, French and Italian teams to face playoff with winner of each respective country's Premiership Competition.Euro Division 1
1PROLeague Bowl (Single Elimination)Petrarca
2PORovigo
3POBéziers
PO - League Cup playoffs in Premiership OR Promotion playoffs in all other leagues.4POS.S. Lazio Rugby
5POBourg-en-Bresse
6 Fiamme Oro
7Carcassonne
8San Donà
All European Tournaments are single-elimination competitions. (No pools) Home and away fixtures for all rounds apart from final.9Reggio Emilia
10Crociati
11REL*Auch
12REL*L'Aquila
13 Georgian Pro Team
14Romanian Pro Team
ECCEuropean Champions Cup   (Euro league to get more places when other countries are promoted to Premiership. Number of places to be equal eventually.)15Russian Pro Team
16These teams to be added gradually.Spanish Pro Team
17Portuguese Pro Team
18Belgian Pro Team
19Moldovan Pro Team
20Netherlands Pro team
EPEuropean Plate                     (Teams promoted from Championship qualify automatically.)21Polish Pro Team
22Ukrainian Pro Team
23Swiss Pro Team
24Swedish Pro Team
ESEuropean Shield
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Post by Feckless Rogue Wed 1 Jan - 0:16

Sin é wrote:
Feckless Rogue wrote:
Sin é wrote:The thing I really like about the Heineken Cup is meeting different teams every year.

That is true. I really like that too.

Sin é wrote:but I really can't see what it would do for Irish teams.

Money.


Not worth it. We'd be treated like Poopie by the PRL who would make the rules to suit themselves as they would control the BT money.

Good point.
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Post by Shifty Wed 1 Jan - 0:32

Seagultaf wrote:For the league to be meaningful, fixtures must be home and away, so 22 teams that's 40 league games plus 9 international weekends that's without any cup or European competitions, impossible!

Anglo Welsh proposal is based on 16 teams so 30 games plus internationals, no cup or euro games. Similar number of games to the existing season.

Wales commitments already mean that the Welsh regions already lose their internationals for 7 Rabo league games and the 6 weeks LV Cup.

The 22 team league would also be 42 weeks not 40.

The 16 team Anglo Welsh would replace the Heinaken Cup, so you'd be replacing 6 new league games with 6-9 weeks of heinaken cup action and it's also been stated the Lv Cup would close meaning you'd lose another 4-6 weeks.

Basically we'd be losing 15 weeks of rugby, replaced by 6 weeks of league rugby. It's been stated that the Aviva teams want to play through the IRB window for the extra income so the new 16 team anglo welsh is far too small. were still 9 weeks short of competition at the very least.
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Post by Shifty Wed 1 Jan - 0:35

HammerofThunor wrote:Sorry, but no way should the professional sides in the Championship be cut out completely. They need to be directly involved in any ring fencing of English teams.

As I said you dont need to get rid of relegation just take the head to head results of the english teams and produce a league table and potentially relegate a team on that.
However only London Welsh and Leeds are eligibly to join the Aviva anyway, none of the others have the ground requirements to the best of my knowledge.
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Post by BlueMuff Wed 1 Jan - 0:48

Its a solution all right but its a BAD solution. It would effectively kill the European Cup / HC as they only difference would be no French teams. Pointless running a second competition then just to accomodate the French. A bit like the LV joke shop.

The current system is not perfect but it works.

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Post by LeinsterFan4life Wed 1 Jan - 0:54

The current system works for now BlueMuff. What happens when this new tv deal kicks in for the French and the HC loses the English and maybe the Welsh.

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Post by Exiledinborders Wed 1 Jan - 1:03

Shifty wrote:
HammerofThunor wrote:Sorry, but no way should the professional sides in the Championship be cut out completely. They need to be directly involved in any ring fencing of English teams.

As I said you dont need to get rid of relegation just take the head to head results of the english teams and produce a league table and potentially relegate a team on that.  
However only London Welsh and Leeds are eligibly to join the Aviva anyway, none of the others have the ground requirements to the best of my knowledge.
I do not think you can have a league from which some teams can be relegated but not others. One of the things I do not like about the proposed inclusion of Welsh teams in AP is that different rules would apply to Welsh teams being relegated than English teams.

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Post by Shifty Wed 1 Jan - 1:25

This is basically the 42 Week club / international season in the northern Hemisphere, with a 10 week off season.  The date displayed is a Saturday, for the purposes of the calender I have used Saturday, but we know games can be Friday night or Sundays.

August
17 = Pre Season friendly, for Aviva and Rabo or no game / Round 1 of Top 14
24 = Pre-season friendly for Aviva and Rabo / Top 14 League week
31 = Pre-season friendly for Aviva and Rabo / Top 14 League week

September
7  = Aviva, Rabo league Round 1 / Top 14 League week
14 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week
21 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week
28 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week

October
5 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week
12 = Heinaken Cup round 1
19 = Heinaken Cup round 2
26 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week

November
2  = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week / Welsh players called up, unavailable for league game
9 =  LV Cup Round 1, Top 14 inactive / Official IRB international weekend
16  = LV Cup Round 2, Top 14 inactive  / Official IRB international weekend
23 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week / Official IRB international weekend
30 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week / International game outside of IRB window

December
7 = Heinaken Cup round 3
14 = Heinaken Cup round 4
21 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week
28 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week

January
4 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week
11 = Heinaken Cup round 5
18 = Heinaken Cup round 6
25 = LV Cup Round 3 / Welsh players called up for international rugby and unavalible to the regions, outsde IRB window.

Febuary
1 = LV Cup Round 4, Top 14 inactive   / Six Nations Round 1, International Window
8  = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week  / Six Nations Round 2, International Window
15 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week  / Welsh players called up for international rugby and unavalible to the regions, outsde IRB window.
22 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week / Six Nations Round 3, International Window

March
1 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week / Welsh players called up for international rugby and unavalible to the regions, outsde IRB window.
8 = LV Cup Semi Final, Top 14 inactive   / Six Nations Round 4, International Window
15 = Lv Cup Final, Top 14 inactive   /Six Nations Round 5, International Window
22 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week
29 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week

April
5 = Heinaken Cup Quarter Finals
12 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week
19 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week
26 = Heinaken Cup Semi Finals

May
3 = Aviva, Rabo , Top 14 League week
10 = Final Game of the Rabo Direct League, Top 14 Quarter Finals
17 = Rabo Direct / Aviva Premiership Semi Final, Top 14 Semi Finals
24 = Heinaken Cup Final
31 = Rabo Direct / Aviva Premiership Final, Top 14 Final
CLUB SEASON ENDS

June
7 = Scotland V USA / New Zealand V England 1 / Aus V France 1/
14 = Scotland V Canada /  New Zealand V England 2 / Aus V France 2 / Wales V South Africa 1 / Ire V Arg 1
21 = Scotland V Argentina / New Zealand V England 3 / Aus V France 3 / Wales V South Africa 2 / Ire V Arg 2
28 = Scotland V South Africa

July
5 Off Season
12 Off Season
19 Off Season
26 Off Season

August
2 Off Season
9 Off Season
16 Start of 2014/2015 season

Basically a 22 team league of 10 celtic teams, and 12 English teams would fit exactly into 42 weeks, which is the time available.   Yahoo


Last edited by Shifty on Wed 1 Jan - 2:29; edited 9 times in total
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Post by Shifty Wed 1 Jan - 1:27

Exiledinborders wrote:I do not think you can have a league from which some teams can be relegated but not others. One of the things I do not like about the proposed inclusion of Welsh teams in AP is that different rules would apply to Welsh teams being relegated than English teams.

Yes but you can work around it by only applying the head to head results of the English teams and relegating the bottom one to keep it fair. Just use the final seasons standing and only apply English results, that way there is no arguments about resting players, or weak teams etc. The English know before hand that their games are important against each other.
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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler Wed 1 Jan - 1:33

Shifty wrote:
HammerofThunor wrote:Sorry, but no way should the professional sides in the Championship be cut out completely. They need to be directly involved in any ring fencing of English teams.

As I said you dont need to get rid of relegation just take the head to head results of the english teams and produce a league table and potentially relegate a team on that.  
However only London Welsh and Leeds are eligibly to join the Aviva anyway, none of the others have the ground requirements to the best of my knowledge.

Do all of the Celtic clubs meet the requirements?

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Post by Shifty Wed 1 Jan - 1:45

Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler wrote:Do all of the Celtic clubs meet the requirements?

No but there has to be a little give and take somewhere.

Wales
Ospreys - Liberty Stadium (20,750)
Dragons - Rodney Parade (11,676)
Blues - Cardiff Arms Park (12,500)
Scarlets - Parc y Scarlets (14,870)

Ireland
Munster - Thomond Park (26,500), Musgrave Park (9,251)
Ulster - Ravenhill (13,500)
Leinster -Aviva Stadium (51,700), RDS Arena (18,500)
Connacht - Galway Sportsgrounds (7,500)

Scotland
Edinburgh - Murrayfield Stadium (67,130)
Glasgow - Scotstoun Stadium (9,708)

The stadiums in Red fall short of the minimum 10k seating, though Glasgow by only 292 seats.
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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler Wed 1 Jan - 1:52

Right Im just thinking if they bent the rules for them we would no doubt see another London Welsh if they tried to block Bedford or whoever getting promoted.

Most likely though they would use this as an excuse for ring fencing as soon as possible.




Surely though the ideal solution is what was proposed a year ago and is still on the table ... a new full European cup essentially the same as the existing one but with more cash on the table and less union involvement and skimming.

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Post by Shifty Wed 1 Jan - 1:57

Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler wrote:Right Im just thinking if they bent the rules for them we would no doubt see another London Welsh if they tried to block Bedford or whoever getting promoted.

Most likely though they would use this as an excuse for ring fencing as soon as possible.




Surely though the ideal solution is what was proposed a year ago and is still on the table ... a new full European cup essentially the same as the existing one but with more cash on the table and less union involvement and skimming.

London Welsh only won in cort because the Aviva rules stated the club must have primary tenancy of their ground to get promoted, when 3 of the existing clubs didnt have an arrangement themselves.  That rule was changed when the court case was lost, so in theory that situation cant happen again.

Whats more, up until recently if several of the existing Aviva clubs had been relegated they couldnt of got promoted again because they were under the 10,000 seat limit themselves!

The way to look at it is the English have 12 places in this league to use as they see fit.  If they choose to have relegation amongst themselves, then use the 12 English teams head to head results at the end of the season and potentially relegate the bottom club.   Though lets be honest many times have clubs been relegated and not relegated it's probably 50/50 at best.
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Post by HammerofThunor Wed 1 Jan - 2:18

Shifty wrote:Whats more, up until recently if several of the existing Aviva clubs had been relegated they couldnt of got promoted again because they were under the 10,000 seat limit themselves!

Out of curiosity who doesn't/didn't have 10,000 capacity? I thought the reason they wouldn't get promoted was because of the standards (Wreck) or the sharing with football (lots).

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Post by doctor_grey Wed 1 Jan - 2:22

Sin é wrote:How long would it be before the English teams would start claiming that with the bigger population they deserve most the money, etc., etc?

I can see the attraction for the English clubs to have the Irish teams playing their teams over there with all the Irish people living over there, but I really can't see what it would do for Irish teams.

The thing I really like about the Heineken Cup is meeting different teams every year. After a while it would just get boring when you know you'd have to play the same teams every year.
Mate, don't get all negative and droopy on us.  Criticising the English for something that hasn't even happened yet.  HellsBells, it's New Year's Eve!  Put yourself in good humour.  

The only way this would work would be to adapt NFL style structure to our businesses.  Unfortunately, it is too open to satisfy the secretive types in Rugby.
Even distribution of all tv revenue by team.
Central merchandising efforts by the League - revenues go equally to teams
Centralised sponsorship of the League - revenues to each team equally
Open books, completely visible, independent auditors
Each team has the same salary cap
Each team must pay a minimum of 80% of salary cap in salary each year (I believe the NFL requires 90%)
60/40 distribution of gate receipts on a home/visitor basis
Conference play and division play - potentially alters the schedule each season as is current in the NFL
Conference and division playoffs.
Potentially a second round of playoffs including France.
Local merchandising by each team - teams keep the results of their own marketing, merchandising, and media efforts

Thisn is the starting point to get this going.  In real terms, probably 5 years away.  And there are significant impediments to address along the way.

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Post by HammerofThunor Wed 1 Jan - 2:27

doctor_grey wrote:The only way this would work would be to adapt NFL style structure to our businesses.  Unfortunately, it is too open to satisfy the secretive types in Rugby.
Even distribution of all tv revenue by team.
Central merchandising efforts by the League - revenues go equally to teams
Centralised sponsorship of the League - revenues to each team equally
Open books, completely visible, independent auditors
Each team has the same salary cap
Each team must pay a minimum of 80% of salary cap in salary each year (I believe the NFL requires 90%)
60/40 distribution of gate receipts on a home/visitor basis
Conference play and division play - potentially alters the schedule each season as is current in the NFL
Conference and division playoffs.
Potentially a second round of playoffs including France.
Local merchandising by each team - teams keep the results of their own marketing, merchandising, and media efforts

Thisn is the starting point to get this going.  In real terms, probably 5 years away.  And there are significant impediments to address along the way.

Personally I'd prefer to stay as we are but the NFL conference/division does seem interesting as is the way I would want us to go if ring fencing was introduced in England. But I would have it with 32 teams (as in NFL) where 20 are English (or slightly less if the Scots add a team or two). This would mean the money would largely go to England (20 out of 32) and I doubt it would ever get agreed. I also think English rugby (at least the top end) would benefit the most out of it.

Regarding the spending at least 80% of the cap thing...how does that work? Does it mean you HAVE to have a sugar daddy to be involved (if your gates aren't to high) or is it because the revenue is split so evenly that all teams should be able to afford 80% (as long as the upper cap is reasonable/tied to central income).

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Post by demosthenes Wed 1 Jan - 2:28

Shifty wrote:
Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler wrote:Do all of the Celtic clubs meet the requirements?

No but there has to be a little give and take somewhere.

Wales
Ospreys - Liberty Stadium (20,750)
Dragons - Rodney Parade (11,676)
Blues - Cardiff Arms Park (12,500)
Scarlets - Parc y Scarlets (14,870)

Ireland
Munster - Thomond Park (26,500), Musgrave Park (9,251)
Ulster - Ravenhill (13,500)
Leinster -Aviva Stadium (51,700), RDS Arena (18,500)
Connacht - Galway Sportsgrounds (7,500)

Scotland
Edinburgh - Murrayfield Stadium (67,130)
Glasgow - Scotstoun Stadium (9,708)

The stadiums in Red fall short of the minimum 10k seating, though Glasgow by only 292 seats.

From recollection Scotstoun (Glasgow's ground) has a regular capacity of only around 6,000. It can be expanded to 10,000-odd by adding temporary stands; and to 15,000 or so by further temp seating, but the latter is only used for the Sevens tourneys. The number times; and periods during the year when temp stands can be erected is also restricted.

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Post by Shifty Wed 1 Jan - 2:34

demosthenes wrote:From recollection Scotstoun (Glasgow's ground) has a regular capacity of only around 6,000.  It can be expanded to 10,000-odd by adding temporary stands; and to 15,000 or so by further temp seating, but the latter is only used for the Sevens tourneys.  The number times; and periods during the year when temp stands can be erected is also restricted.

There seems to be 50 seperate reasons why the European game is falling apart at the moment. A 22 team league FITS PERFECTLY into the current season.
If the only reason not to do it is because of Glasgow's stadium then to be fair maybe we can tck off all the other bad things and just get on with it.

The main reason for everything is the French having more money than us if we pool our resources and unite in an new league then maybe we can fight them off.
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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler Wed 1 Jan - 2:35

Feckless Rogue wrote:
Sin é wrote:The thing I really like about the Heineken Cup is meeting different teams every year.

That is true. I really like that too.



#
Well get rid of your obsession with ring fencing then.


Also in this league set up youd face more different opponents during a season than you do under the current system (rabo + HC) where you can in theory face the same team 6 times, although the total pool of potenytial clubs is lower.
Back when I first started following rugby the teams just organised their own fixtures and there wasnt really a proper league at all. maybe we should go back to that, pull names out of a hat and make each game its own occasion. Clubs with the biggest draw get the best fixtures. Tigers no doubt would play half their games against touring SH international reserve teams. No more trips to empty scottish wastelands, its worth thinking about.


The season would be over pretty quickly for a lot of clubs though. One of the things thats horrid about the current Rabo is how bloated the middle is with teams having little or nothing to play for halfway through the season. With no HC qualification and 22 clubs this would be horrific in the Lions League. Even if we had additional " inter league" tables to see how the Irish stacked up against each other or double points games in February or whatever most fans would drift off pretty fast.
In the current Jeff theres rarely more than a couple of dead rubbers played where neither team is still in with a chance or relegation/playoffs/hc qualification. Thats one of its real strengths.

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Post by doctor_grey Wed 1 Jan - 2:43

HammerofThunor wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:The only way this would work would be to adapt NFL style structure to our businesses.  Unfortunately, it is too open to satisfy the secretive types in Rugby.
Even distribution of all tv revenue by team.
Central merchandising efforts by the League - revenues go equally to teams
Centralised sponsorship of the League - revenues to each team equally
Open books, completely visible, independent auditors
Each team has the same salary cap
Each team must pay a minimum of 80% of salary cap in salary each year (I believe the NFL requires 90%)
60/40 distribution of gate receipts on a home/visitor basis
Conference play and division play - potentially alters the schedule each season as is current in the NFL
Conference and division playoffs.
Potentially a second round of playoffs including France.
Local merchandising by each team - teams keep the results of their own marketing, merchandising, and media efforts

Thisn is the starting point to get this going.  In real terms, probably 5 years away.  And there are significant impediments to address along the way.

Personally I'd prefer to stay as we are but the NFL conference/division does seem interesting as is the way I would want us to go if ring fencing was introduced in England. But I would have it with 32 teams (as in NFL) where 20 are English (or slightly less if the Scots add a team or two). This would mean the money would largely go to England (20 out of 32) and I doubt it would ever get agreed. I also think English rugby (at least the top end) would benefit the most out of it.

Regarding the spending at least 80% of the cap thing...how does that work? Does it mean you HAVE to have a sugar daddy to be involved (if your gates aren't to high) or is it because the revenue is split so evenly that all teams should be able to afford 80% (as long as the upper cap is reasonable/tied to central income).
Firstly, the money wouldn't be going to 'England' at all.  It would be going to the clubs.  Really would have nothing to do with England, except for the accident of geography.  

The minimum % of the salary cap was established in the NFL for three main reasons:
To ensure each team spend enough to keep every team competitive - If a team is not good it is down to bad personnel decisions, not hording money to make easy profits.
To ensure each team in financially strong enough to have the potential to put out competitive teams.  
To ensure a minimum amount of money is available to players for salaries.
So, if a team cannot pay the 80% (or 90% in the NFL) they are not financially sound enough to play in the league.  The NFL is always open for expansion.  They have strict financial guidelines for any new team to meet.  A B&I League would have to be the same.  The salary cap in the NFL is adjusted based upon team/league profits. So a B&I League salary cap would have to be achievable for any teams which would enter.

A last point about the sharing of gate receipts.  In the NFL, luxury box sales are not shared.  This is an additional incentive for teams to try to fund new stadia.

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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler Wed 1 Jan - 2:49

doctor_grey wrote:
HammerofThunor wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:The only way this would work would be to adapt NFL style structure to our businesses.  Unfortunately, it is too open to satisfy the secretive types in Rugby.
Even distribution of all tv revenue by team.
Central merchandising efforts by the League - revenues go equally to teams
Centralised sponsorship of the League - revenues to each team equally
Open books, completely visible, independent auditors
Each team has the same salary cap
Each team must pay a minimum of 80% of salary cap in salary each year (I believe the NFL requires 90%)
60/40 distribution of gate receipts on a home/visitor basis
Conference play and division play - potentially alters the schedule each season as is current in the NFL
Conference and division playoffs.
Potentially a second round of playoffs including France.
Local merchandising by each team - teams keep the results of their own marketing, merchandising, and media efforts

Thisn is the starting point to get this going.  In real terms, probably 5 years away.  And there are significant impediments to address along the way.

Personally I'd prefer to stay as we are but the NFL conference/division does seem interesting as is the way I would want us to go if ring fencing was introduced in England. But I would have it with 32 teams (as in NFL) where 20 are English (or slightly less if the Scots add a team or two). This would mean the money would largely go to England (20 out of 32) and I doubt it would ever get agreed. I also think English rugby (at least the top end) would benefit the most out of it.

Regarding the spending at least 80% of the cap thing...how does that work? Does it mean you HAVE to have a sugar daddy to be involved (if your gates aren't to high) or is it because the revenue is split so evenly that all teams should be able to afford 80% (as long as the upper cap is reasonable/tied to central income).
Firstly, the money wouldn't be going to 'England' at all.  It would be going to the clubs.  Really would have nothing to do with England, except for the accident of geography.  

The minimum % of the salary cap was established in the NFL for three main reasons:
To ensure each team spend enough to keep every team competitive - If a team is not good it is down to bad personnel decisions, not hording money to make easy profits.
To ensure each team in financially strong enough to have the potential to put out competitive teams.  
To ensure a minimum amount of money is available to players for salaries.
So, if a team cannot pay the 80% (or 90% in the NFL) they are not financially sound enough to play in the league.  The NFL is always open for expansion.  They have strict financial guidelines for any new team to meet.  A B&I League would have to be the same.  The salary cap in the NFL is adjusted based upon team/league profits.  So a B&I League salary cap would have to be achievable for any teams which would enter.  

A last point about the sharing of gate receipts.  In the NFL, luxury box sales are not shared.  This is an additional incentive for teams to try to fund new stadia.

Right what they dont want is someone figuring out they can take an equal share of the cash, spend nothing on rugby, put out a dire team but have a lot left for coke and whores. Not wishing to mention the italians in the Rabo but ...

Some of the big clubs have been mooting franchising ( and the RFU threatened it a couple of times when PRL got uppity) in England. Theres a lot to be said for it, though Im not sure League has quite figured out how to make any kind of sensible system and season yet.
Its certainly not something they can jump to to solve the short term mess though.

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Post by Exiledinborders Wed 1 Jan - 2:59

Shifty wrote:
Exiledinborders wrote:I do not think you can have a league from which some teams can be relegated but not others. One of the things I do not like about the proposed inclusion of Welsh teams in AP is that different rules would apply to Welsh teams being relegated than English teams.

Yes but you can work around it by only applying the head to head results of the English teams and relegating the bottom one to keep it fair.  Just use the final seasons standing and only apply English results, that way there is no arguments about resting players, or weak teams etc.  The English know before hand that their games are important against each other.
That is still applying different rules to different teams. If we have one league then all must play to the same rules.


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Post by Feckless Rogue Wed 1 Jan - 3:05

There are compatibility issues though.

The English clubs would still want relegation/promotion. Which would result in the same unfair uneven playing field rows all over again wouldn't it?

The Irish have strict limits on international players game time and the number of foreign players who can be signed. The English clubs have arrangements, but they are less restrictive. Not sure about the regions.

So either the franchises have to be more like clubs, or the clubs have to be more like franchises, or a bit of both. And there's a whole new set of arguments.
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Post by Notch Wed 1 Jan - 3:26

I don't think so, I don't think that most fans in Ireland, Scotland and England would be in favour of this- just my gut feeling. How about a poll?

If it happens, it will be forced on us and be pretty unstable.
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Post by Shifty Wed 1 Jan - 3:46

Feckless Rogue wrote:There are compatibility issues though.

The English clubs would still want relegation/promotion. Which would result in the same unfair uneven playing field rows all over again wouldn't it?

The Irish have strict limits on international players game time and the number of foreign players who can be signed. The English clubs have arrangements, but they are less restrictive. Not sure about the regions.

So either the franchises have to be more like clubs, or the clubs have to be more like franchises, or a bit of both. And there's a whole new set of arguments.

Not really, the top 3 provinces have brilliant depth, while the Irish Union could still run them as they see fit. If you look at the Aviva squads they are not better than the Irish provinces.

Then again the Heinaken Cup is dead and the Welsh may be leaving the Rabo, as well as the Italians. So your left with a 6 team league with the Scottish as the worst case scenario. There may have to be give and take all round, or no more provinces.
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Post by doctor_grey Wed 1 Jan - 5:36

Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:
HammerofThunor wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:The only way this would work would be to adapt NFL style structure to our businesses.  Unfortunately, it is too open to satisfy the secretive types in Rugby.
Even distribution of all tv revenue by team.
Central merchandising efforts by the League - revenues go equally to teams
Centralised sponsorship of the League - revenues to each team equally
Open books, completely visible, independent auditors
Each team has the same salary cap
Each team must pay a minimum of 80% of salary cap in salary each year (I believe the NFL requires 90%)
60/40 distribution of gate receipts on a home/visitor basis
Conference play and division play - potentially alters the schedule each season as is current in the NFL
Conference and division playoffs.
Potentially a second round of playoffs including France.
Local merchandising by each team - teams keep the results of their own marketing, merchandising, and media efforts

Thisn is the starting point to get this going.  In real terms, probably 5 years away.  And there are significant impediments to address along the way.

Personally I'd prefer to stay as we are but the NFL conference/division does seem interesting as is the way I would want us to go if ring fencing was introduced in England. But I would have it with 32 teams (as in NFL) where 20 are English (or slightly less if the Scots add a team or two). This would mean the money would largely go to England (20 out of 32) and I doubt it would ever get agreed. I also think English rugby (at least the top end) would benefit the most out of it.

Regarding the spending at least 80% of the cap thing...how does that work? Does it mean you HAVE to have a sugar daddy to be involved (if your gates aren't to high) or is it because the revenue is split so evenly that all teams should be able to afford 80% (as long as the upper cap is reasonable/tied to central income).
Firstly, the money wouldn't be going to 'England' at all.  It would be going to the clubs.  Really would have nothing to do with England, except for the accident of geography.  

The minimum % of the salary cap was established in the NFL for three main reasons:
To ensure each team spend enough to keep every team competitive - If a team is not good it is down to bad personnel decisions, not hording money to make easy profits.
To ensure each team in financially strong enough to have the potential to put out competitive teams.  
To ensure a minimum amount of money is available to players for salaries.
So, if a team cannot pay the 80% (or 90% in the NFL) they are not financially sound enough to play in the league.  The NFL is always open for expansion.  They have strict financial guidelines for any new team to meet.  A B&I League would have to be the same.  The salary cap in the NFL is adjusted based upon team/league profits.  So a B&I League salary cap would have to be achievable for any teams which would enter.  

A last point about the sharing of gate receipts.  In the NFL, luxury box sales are not shared.  This is an additional incentive for teams to try to fund new stadia.

Right what they dont want is someone figuring out they can take an equal share of the cash, spend nothing on rugby, put out a dire team but have a lot left for coke and whores. Not wishing to mention the italians in the Rabo but ...

Some of the big clubs have been mooting franchising ( and the RFU threatened it a couple of times when PRL got uppity) in England. Theres a lot to be said for it, though Im not sure League has quite figured out how to make any kind of sensible system and season yet.
Its certainly not something they can jump to to solve the short term mess though.
I know this discussion is completely hypothetical - at this moment in time - but I rather like it anyway.  Kind of a quiet philosophical discussion before the family new years extravaganza to start soon.  Besides, I do think we will evolve this way in the future.  

Taking this further, I don't look at it as franchising.  It would be clubs as they are today, but in a ring fenced league.  I believe clear parameters for performance (primarily financial) can be established covering a three to five year periods which could establish the basis for relegation.  Also, second tier clubs wanting to break into the top level would need to demonstrate financial performance as well as solid playing records.  So there could be room for promotion, probably less for relegation.  Right now there are 22 top level B&I teams.  Start with those, but expect further growth as second tier clubs establish their financial position to ensure competitiveness at the top level.  

A next step would be to ensure the season is not disturbed by international secondments.  Or if there is it happens not more than once per season and all teams in the league follow the exact same rules.  No exceptions.  This also means the national unions would have to sign up to limiting their control of players during the seasons. If a union dictates when a player can play in league competition (the exception being injury), then it undermines the league directly.  Even one time.  As it is today.

I would believe a B&I league would be much more commercially attractive than our current set-up.  Consequently, it could be more profitable than the separate leagues plus any Heineken Cup revenue.  The notion of Leinster coming to Franklin's Gardens once a season, or Leicester going to Munster, or Ospreys at Harlequins or Sarries in Edinburgh would be fantastic.  A problem would be how to expand our tiny little stadia.  

Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler wrote:Right what they dont want is someone figuring out they can take an equal share of the cash, spend nothing on rugby, put out a dire team but have a lot left for coke and whores.
Well, Coca-Cola is all right (the other coke can go to hell), and well, those other little jublees.......it is new year's eve........

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Post by Shifty Wed 1 Jan - 5:44

Notch wrote:I don't think so, I don't think that most fans in Ireland, Scotland and England would be in favour of this- just my gut feeling. How about a poll?

If it happens, it will be forced on us and be pretty unstable.

I agree, simply because we dont need a USA sport style league, we have 42 weeks for a club season and a 10 celt and 12 aviva league would take exactly 42 weeks to play.

If you scrap the Rabo, Heinaken and LV Cup, then scrap the 3 weeks you have for pre-season friendlies, and start on the same week as the top 14 in France (they dont have pre-season friendlies), then it fits.

Yes we'd have to play through the 6 nations and November series, but there are rabo, top 14 and Aviva league games during the 6 nations anyway, so nothing changes at all.

We all gain because we have something to fight the French with.
Shifty
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Post by broadlandboy Wed 1 Jan - 5:50

Shifty, the French do have preseason friendlies.

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