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English Domestic Rugby Ongoing

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geoff999rugby
RugbyFan100
BigGee
Kingshu
Heaf
king_carlos
dummy_half
Rugby Fan
Welshmushroom
carpet baboon
broadlandboy
formerly known as Sam
Lowlandbrit
No 7&1/2
doctor_grey
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Geordie
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Post by Geordie Tue 04 Apr 2023, 7:52 am

First topic message reminder :

This is a statement from the Coventry Rugby Chairman and was posted on the falcons forum as it seems to point towards a big shake up that affects Prem and Championship teams. The paragraph in the top right is the interesting part for other English teams....

Thought you might like to read it...and if you have any knowledge of the shake ups coming?

https://www.coventryrugby.co.uk/an-open-letter-from-executive-chairman-jon-sharp/

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Post by Kingshu Thu 19 Oct 2023, 9:28 am

With CVC as partners in both it prob has some momentum to get over the line.

Can't see their being two tiers after all which Union if going to vote to have some or all its professional teams play in a 2nd division.

2 conferences (drawn based on previous years standings) of 2 SA, Ire Wal, 1 Scottish and one Italian, plus 4 English, top 3 in each conference play off for cup, 4-6 play off for shield. HCup changed to 2 leg knock out.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Thu 19 Oct 2023, 10:19 am

Welshmushroom wrote:I actually think this wouldn't have been a bad move in the long term but from a URC perspective 10 English Teams are to many.  In reality English rugby can probably only really afford 6 Pro teams at max.  

Would be hard to really to see how a 26 team league could work. I think accepting all 10 clubs would be a mistake for URC rugby in the long term.

I'd hate to see the Prem get in bed with the URC. The game in Wales is on it's knees, Scotland muddles through with two. Italian and South African rugby were only introduced to increase the amounts going into the coffers.

The Prem has plenty of its own problems but being able to actually follow your side to away games is a plus and competent management over a period of time with no more revenue destroying pandemics should see it right again. Quite frankly a working second tier would be of more value to English rugby.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Thu 19 Oct 2023, 10:21 am

king_carlos wrote:The first half was terrible. The lineout was a shambles in attack and defence. The scrum was up and down. The discipline contained some absurd lapses.

On the good side. Shillcock and Hatherell played big roles in transforming things. Shillcock could be signing of the season. He's a terrific player at 10 or 15. He added so much control and direction after Atkinson had a bit of a howler. Hatherell added a lot of physicality and go forward. Which is what we need from him.

A very disappointing night. Failing to get the LBP at the end with multiple scrums and lineouts in the Bristol 22 summed up the frustration. They did prevent Bristol getting the TBP at least which felt nailed on at halftime.

It's impossible to predict any sort of side for next weekend until we know which players will be returning. We could have one of Montoya or Reffell though which is huge given the lack of direction in the first half. Shillcock and Hatherell should start though.

Tigers tactics in the first half were dreadful. One off runners from 9 and kick heavy tactics with a 9 who had a shoddy box kick.

Second half we saw some actual interplay and Shillcock took a lot of play on himself which stretched the Bristol defence more. Still wasn't great but gave me some hope we've got a platform to star from.

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Post by LeinsterFan4life Thu 19 Oct 2023, 10:54 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Let your irrational dislike of the English go. You'll feel better.
How does not wanting the Nigel wrays of this world involved mean I have an "irrational dislike of the the English"? I want nothing more than England to have a successful two tier domestic league and for the HC to return to it's former glory, but that doesn't happen with the current leadership.

Surely you can understand how many fans would have reservations of getting into bed with those lads, just as the URC is starting to come good?

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Post by BigGee Thu 19 Oct 2023, 11:23 am

England really aught to have the resources to have a league of its own but a couple more bankruptcies and who knows, this may be their only option.

I think a lot will depend on how this season goes for them, both on and off the pitch.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 19 Oct 2023, 11:36 am

LeinsterFan4life wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Let your irrational dislike of the English go. You'll feel better.
How does not wanting the Nigel wrays of this world involved mean I have an "irrational dislike of the the English"? I want nothing more than England to have a successful two tier domestic league and for the HC to return to it's former glory, but that doesn't happen with the current leadership.

Surely you can understand how many fans would have reservations of getting into bed with those lads, just as the URC is starting to come good?

The silliness of the Euro comments again. Ignoring covid. Now commenting on Wray when he has little to do with any of the issues.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 19 Oct 2023, 11:37 am

BigGee wrote:England really aught to have the resources to have a league of its own but a couple more bankruptcies and who knows, this may be their only option.

I think a lot will depend on how this season goes for them, both on and off the pitch.

Covid hit hard. The discussions with the PRL and RFU are now underway so that probably forms any foundation of any change to league structure. Before that happens reckon it's all just paper talk.

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Post by Welshmushroom Thu 19 Oct 2023, 3:00 pm

BigGee wrote:England really aught to have the resources to have a league of its own but a couple more bankruptcies and who knows, this may be their only option.

I think a lot will depend on how this season goes for them, both on and off the pitch.

Some sources inside the game is another 2 English Prem sides are close to going on the wall. I would have thought Newcastle is one of them for sure as I know the owner was desperate to find a buyer earlier in the year. I would imagine Bath, Bristol, Northampton, Leicester must be safe.

That leaves only Gloucester, Sale, Harlequins, Exeter & Saracens with question marks over them. Granted Exeter & Saracens are less likely to be the ones. But that does mean Gloucester, Sale or Quins might be in trouble. My money is on Sale.

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Post by Welshmushroom Thu 19 Oct 2023, 3:05 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:
BigGee wrote:England really aught to have the resources to have a league of its own but a couple more bankruptcies and who knows, this may be their only option.

I think a lot will depend on how this season goes for them, both on and off the pitch.

Covid hit hard. The discussions with the PRL and RFU are now underway so that probably forms any foundation of any change to league structure. Before that happens reckon it's all just paper talk.

Probably. I thought I heard earlier that URC and Premiership rugby share the same offices. So it was probably a water cooler conversation that has been blown up by the media. Its probably a what if scenario if Premiership rugby keeps losing clubs to bankruptcy and run out of clubs to have a meaningful calendar.


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Post by carpet baboon Thu 19 Oct 2023, 4:34 pm

I would file this in the same category as all the "Welsh regions in talks with PRL"
Little to no actual truth in it but serves to get column inches in the hope for a better negotiating position/sponsor/TV deal delete as applicable.
The URC are looking for a new TV deal would be worth this idea floating round in the hope BT/TNT decide to get in early.
PRL need some good publicity and this could attract sponsors.

But until someone high up is willing to put their name to it and state it's happening I doubt it's anything at the moment

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Post by RugbyFan100 Wed 25 Oct 2023, 11:39 am

carpet baboon wrote:I would file this in the same category as all the "Welsh regions in talks with PRL"
Little to no actual truth in it but serves to get column inches

Bang on as usual Carpet Baboon:



The Rugby Football Union has confirmed it is to take part in talks to explore the possibility of establishing a British and Irish league.‌

Bill Sweeney, the RFU chief executive, described the proposal as at a “very tentative” stage but said the governing body would be involved in discussions in the next month.‌

It is understood that CVC, the private equity firm that holds significant stakes in both Premiership Rugby and URC, is open to the idea, and exploratory work to determine whether the concept viable both from a commercial and sporting perspective is already under way.‌

“I think you’d expect us to talk about anything really, the way the game needs to grow, the game needs to be financially stronger,” said Sweeney.‌

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/rugby-union/2023/10/24/rfu-confirms-talks-over-british-and-irish-league/

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Post by carpet baboon Wed 25 Oct 2023, 1:23 pm

Haha. It's not like the PRL and RFU sat in a select committee hearing and stayed that they, never have, and had no intention in the future of invite Welsh regions into the PRL

And you missed off the important part of the post where I stayed "untill someone high up is willing to put there name to it"
Which they now have.

And even with his statement it's very vague and "throwing ideas around"

Still many many hurdles to leap.


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Post by LeinsterFan4life Wed 25 Oct 2023, 1:30 pm

RugbyFan100 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:I would file this in the same category as all the "Welsh regions in talks with PRL"
Little to no actual truth in it but serves to get column inches

Bang on as usual Carpet Baboon:



The Rugby Football Union has confirmed it is to take part in talks to explore the possibility of establishing a British and Irish league.‌

Bill Sweeney, the RFU chief executive, described the proposal as at a “very tentative” stage but said the governing body would be involved in discussions in the next month.‌

It is understood that CVC, the private equity firm that holds significant stakes in both Premiership Rugby and URC, is open to the idea, and exploratory work to determine whether the concept viable both from a commercial and sporting perspective is already under way.‌

“I think you’d expect us to talk about anything really, the way the game needs to grow, the game needs to be financially stronger,” said Sweeney.‌

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/rugby-union/2023/10/24/rfu-confirms-talks-over-british-and-irish-league/
Would love to hear what you think of the premiership now.

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Post by RugbyFan100 Wed 25 Oct 2023, 1:52 pm

LeinsterFan4life wrote:
RugbyFan100 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:I would file this in the same category as all the "Welsh regions in talks with PRL"
Little to no actual truth in it but serves to get column inches

Bang on as usual Carpet Baboon:



The Rugby Football Union has confirmed it is to take part in talks to explore the possibility of establishing a British and Irish league.‌

Bill Sweeney, the RFU chief executive, described the proposal as at a “very tentative” stage but said the governing body would be involved in discussions in the next month.‌

It is understood that CVC, the private equity firm that holds significant stakes in both Premiership Rugby and URC, is open to the idea, and exploratory work to determine whether the concept viable both from a commercial and sporting perspective is already under way.‌

“I think you’d expect us to talk about anything really, the way the game needs to grow, the game needs to be financially stronger,” said Sweeney.‌

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/rugby-union/2023/10/24/rfu-confirms-talks-over-british-and-irish-league/
Would love to hear what you think of the premiership now.

What about it? It's still far more watchable than Vodacom v Zebre

It's a fantastic league. Way better than the binfire that is the URC.

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Post by RugbyFan100 Wed 25 Oct 2023, 1:53 pm

carpet baboon wrote:Haha. It's not like the PRL and RFU sat in a select committee hearing and stayed that they, never have, and had no intention in the future of invite Welsh regions into the PRL

And you missed off the important part of the post where I stayed "untill someone high up is willing to put there name to it"
Which they now have.

And even with his statement it's very vague and "throwing ideas around"

Still many many hurdles to leap.


Very Happy

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Post by carpet baboon Wed 25 Oct 2023, 2:14 pm

RugbyFan100 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:Haha. It's not like the PRL and RFU sat in a select committee hearing and stayed that they, never have, and had no intention in the future of invite Welsh regions into the PRL

And you missed off the important part of the post where I stayed "untill someone high up is willing to put there name to it"
Which they now have.

And even with his statement it's very vague and "throwing ideas around"

Still many many hurdles to leap.


Very Happy

Pitiful

What is? Your ability to read a full post and understand what was said?

Or your attempts at prove someone was wrong, even though the fact not a single Welsh region or club is currently competing in the PRL or English system, thus proving me to be correct?

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Post by RugbyFan100 Wed 25 Oct 2023, 4:24 pm

carpet baboon wrote:
RugbyFan100 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:Haha. It's not like the PRL and RFU sat in a select committee hearing and stayed that they, never have, and had no intention in the future of invite Welsh regions into the PRL

And you missed off the important part of the post where I stayed "untill someone high up is willing to put there name to it"
Which they now have.

And even with his statement it's very vague and "throwing ideas around"

Still many many hurdles to leap.


Very Happy

Pitiful

What is? Your ability to read a full post and understand what was said?

Or your attempts at prove someone was wrong, even though the fact not a single Welsh region or club is currently competing in the PRL or English system, thus proving me to be correct?

This is why I don;t come here anymore. It's just posters lying to save face all the time

Little to no actual truth in it

Is what you claimed. Yet the RFU have just confirmed it's true.

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Post by BigGee Wed 25 Oct 2023, 4:50 pm

It's getting a bit personal here lads, let's keep it to the rugby!

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Post by LeinsterFan4life Wed 25 Oct 2023, 6:51 pm

Personally think England not having their own professional league is absolutely disastrous for world rugby. If a nation like England can't sustain their own league, what chance does any new market have? Also if England joins, then there is surely no chance of the game expanding beyond the traditional strongholds there. (Yorkshire gone for good etc etc). It just smacks of yet more short term gains for long term pain, which is kinda what's killed club rugby the last decade or so.






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Post by BigGee Wed 25 Oct 2023, 7:13 pm

LeinsterFan4life wrote:Personally think England not having their own professional league is absolutely disastrous for world rugby. If a nation like England can't sustain their own league, what chance does any new market have? Also if England joins, then there is surely no chance of the game expanding beyond the traditional strongholds there. (Yorkshire gone for good etc etc). It just smacks of yet more short term gains for long term pain, which is kinda what's killed club rugby the last decade or so.






I am slightly intrigued by the prospect of a non French Euro and SA league but at the same time tend to agree that it is bonkers thst England, with all their resources, cannot manage a league of their own.

I can see the attractions to the non English participants in that the TV money, which for us is currently pretty rank, will presumably be improved.

For the English clubs the dilution of the money you would imagine ia not going to help them at all.

Whatever the solution that comes out from this, the need for a financially sustaibable model is key. The danger for the English clubs is that this might yet mean them shedding a few more clubs.

Is that what they really want? Giving up their major advantage in terms of resources may be a big price to pay for this to go through.

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Post by carpet baboon Wed 25 Oct 2023, 7:19 pm

Fair enough BigGee.

As far as the rugby is concerned The RFU still have no interest in the Welsh regions joining the PRL as they have stated publicly.

What has been mentioned publicly is that the RFU have been looking at lots of ideas to maximize revenue and bring sustainability for the English clubs. CVC being heavily involved in these talks

"We want to attract more investment coming in, so all sorts of conversations take place in terms of different options. That one (British and Irish League) is not fully developed by any means. So it’s a very tentative, hypothetical conversation at this stage but it has certain merits, but it also has certain challenges.”‌

So there you have a direct quote about the rugby.

In my original comment I was sceptical about the idea been floated by "sources" with no names attached, which I mentioned seemed mutch like previous "news" articles published most recently by Mr Fissler in the rugby paper which claimed that two Welsh clubs had been recruited to move into the PRL to replace Wasps and Worcester. I believe it was the esteemed PhillBB who posted that article.
Now this was not the first article PhillBB had highlighted over the years showing the supposed interest the PRL had for the Welsh clubs, all from nameless sources and I had voiced my doubts that these "news" articles were factual but more likely stories planted by one side or the other to help with negotiations of some sort.

Approximately two weeks after Mr Fisslers article was published the head of the PRL and the RFU were being questioned in a commons select committee hearing, and were asked directly if the Welsh clubs would be entering the PRL. The answer was that they had never entered into any conversations about Welsh clubs joining the PRL and they didn't envisage that conversation happening any time in the future. Thus confirming my belief that the stories were in fact bobbins.

Now in my original post I stated untill someone went on record I would remain sceptical. Now someone has gone on record about a British and Irish league (note B&I not Anglo Welsh) I will lend it a bit of credence but as he said himself it's currently a "hypothetical" conversation with certain challenges, I feel I can stand by my original statement on this thread (and previous statements on the PRL not being interested in an Anglo Welsh league) and any fair minded contributor could see it was presented without malice within the context of the information then known.

Hope this clears it all up




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Post by carpet baboon Wed 25 Oct 2023, 7:34 pm

BigGee wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote:Personally think England not having their own professional league is absolutely disastrous for world rugby. If a nation like England can't sustain their own league, what chance does any new market have? Also if England joins, then there is surely no chance of the game expanding beyond the traditional strongholds there. (Yorkshire gone for good etc etc). It just smacks of yet more short term gains for long term pain, which is kinda what's killed club rugby the last decade or so.






I am slightly intrigued by the prospect of a non French Euro and SA league but at the same time tend to agree that it is bonkers thst England, with all their resources, cannot manage a league of their own.

I can see the attractions to the non English participants in that the TV money, which for us is currently pretty rank, will presumably be improved.

For the English clubs  the dilution of the money you would imagine ia not going to help them at all.

Whatever the solution that comes out from this, the need for a financially sustaibable model is key. The danger for the English clubs is that this might yet mean them shedding a few more clubs.

Is that what they really want? Giving up their major advantage in terms of resources may be a big price to pay for this to go through.

It does seem mad that England can't sustain its own league.
From an outsider's perspective who happens to live in England how the PRL and RFU have ballsed it up is quite impressive.

At some point the PRL got ahead of itself and thought it could run ALL professional rugby (including the national team, as they knew that's where the big money was) which is one of the reasons they surprised the RFU with the BT sport TV deal and demands the European tournaments had to change, they thought the RFU would back them. Unfortunately the head of the RFU (was it Bill then?) was a little peeved that the first he heard of it was when he was called by another union asking what the hell was he playing at.

Think there was quite a bit of distrust between them since then which then led to the first salary cap breech review, in which one of the guilty clubs held the rest hostage by refusing to sign any new participation deals if they were publicly named as being the team fined, and the RFU couldn't do much as it was right before England was hosting the world cup and they didn't want to look like a bunch of clowns (in retrospect they shouldn't have worried about that)

So much promise and great foundations ruined by chasing the money now.

Well that's my opinion


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Post by Recwatcher16 Thu 26 Oct 2023, 4:49 pm

carpet baboon wrote:
BigGee wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote:Personally think England not having their own professional league is absolutely disastrous for world rugby. If a nation like England can't sustain their own league, what chance does any new market have? Also if England joins, then there is surely no chance of the game expanding beyond the traditional strongholds there. (Yorkshire gone for good etc etc). It just smacks of yet more short term gains for long term pain, which is kinda what's killed club rugby the last decade or so.






I am slightly intrigued by the prospect of a non French Euro and SA league but at the same time tend to agree that it is bonkers thst England, with all their resources, cannot manage a league of their own.

I can see the attractions to the non English participants in that the TV money, which for us is currently pretty rank, will presumably be improved.

For the English clubs  the dilution of the money you would imagine ia not going to help them at all.

Whatever the solution that comes out from this, the need for a financially sustaibable model is key. The danger for the English clubs is that this might yet mean them shedding a few more clubs.

Is that what they really want? Giving up their major advantage in terms of resources may be a big price to pay for this to go through.

It does seem mad that England can't sustain its own league.
From an outsider's perspective who happens to live in England how the PRL and RFU have ballsed it up is quite impressive.

At some point the PRL got ahead of itself and thought it could run ALL professional rugby (including the national team, as they knew that's where the big money was) which is one of the reasons they surprised the RFU with the BT sport TV deal and demands the European tournaments had to change, they thought the RFU would back them. Unfortunately the head of the RFU (was it Bill then?) was a little peeved that the first he heard of it was when he was called by another union asking what the hell was he playing at.

Think there was quite a bit of distrust between them since then which then led to the first salary cap breech review, in which one of the guilty clubs held the rest hostage by refusing to sign any new participation deals if they were publicly named as being the team fined, and the RFU couldn't do much as it was right before England was hosting the world cup and they didn't want to look like a bunch of clowns (in retrospect they shouldn't have worried about that)

So much promise and great foundations ruined by chasing the money now.

Well that's my opinion


As you say Carpet, your opinion, very few facts.
Wasps and LI went bust due to debt whilst attempting to own a stadium. Covid stopped the major revenue stream, leading to a drain on their balance sheets until they could no longer fund the debts. The current salary cap is to enable all teams to rebuild their balance sheets, which were too low after covid. It's that simple.

Your second paragraph is some conspiracy theory given Unions always run national sides. The difference over the last 25 years is Unions elsewhere owning/running the top club tier of the game, which has led to far more tests on an annual basis to pay for it all and a drift towards top down control rather than bottom up through the grass roots. That's great when your top team is winning but leaves nowhere to go when you are losing - just ask Australia, two times RWC winner.....

I am not surprised the clubs have historically been wary of the RFU looking at the top down model elsewhere, rather than the longer term French model. The French however have always had a march on English clubs because they have not had to fund or maintain municipal stadia.

I am still curious as to what was changed in the Euro competitions, other than moving the head office from one tax haven to a different one and the sponsorship opportunities drying up - not best timing I grant you. I see the URC have said meritocratic qualification is the way to go, if that is what you refer to.

Domestic club rugby should be about local rivalries - getting on a plane to play a match, is not the long term answer. Where I would agree is the scandalous non promotion of the Championship in England and the RFU need to up their game, create a strategy and stick to it.
Wales and Scotland will eventually realise that the grassroots are the jewel in the crown not elitist franchises, otherwise their historic clubs will disappear having been made an irrelevance and football will then dominate, sadly.

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Post by Kingshu Thu 26 Oct 2023, 5:14 pm

carpet baboon wrote:Fair enough BigGee.

As far as the rugby is concerned The RFU still have no interest in the Welsh regions joining the PRL as they have stated publicly.

What has been mentioned publicly is that the RFU have been looking at lots of ideas to maximize revenue and bring sustainability for the English clubs. CVC being heavily involved in these talks

"We want to attract more investment coming in, so all sorts of conversations take place in terms of different options. That one (British and Irish League) is not fully developed by any means. So it’s a very tentative, hypothetical conversation at this stage but it has certain merits, but it also has certain challenges.”‌

So there you have a direct quote about the rugby.

In my original comment I was sceptical about the idea been floated by "sources" with no names attached, which I mentioned seemed mutch like previous "news" articles published most recently by Mr Fissler in the rugby paper which claimed that two Welsh clubs had been recruited to move into the PRL to replace Wasps and Worcester. I believe it was the esteemed PhillBB who posted that article.
Now this was not the first article PhillBB had highlighted over the years showing the supposed interest the PRL had for the Welsh clubs, all from nameless sources and I had voiced my doubts that these "news" articles were factual but more likely stories planted by one side or the other to help with negotiations of some sort.

Approximately two weeks after Mr Fisslers article was published the head of the PRL and the RFU were being questioned in a commons select committee hearing, and were asked directly if the Welsh clubs would be entering the PRL. The answer was that they had never entered into any conversations about Welsh clubs joining the PRL and they didn't envisage that conversation happening any time in the future. Thus confirming my belief that the stories were in fact bobbins.

Now in my original post I stated untill someone went on record I would remain sceptical. Now someone has gone on record about a British and Irish league  (note B&I not Anglo Welsh) I will lend it a bit of credence but as he said himself it's currently a "hypothetical" conversation with certain challenges, I feel I can stand by my original statement on this thread (and previous statements on the PRL not being interested in an Anglo Welsh league) and any fair minded contributor could see it was presented without malice within the context of the information then known.

Hope this clears it all up




URC TV deal isn't rank, in fact its better than the Premierships, and on par with the massive Top 14 TV deal.

PRO 14 TV deal was £25m a season, and URC is £55 all while keeping a large % of games of free to air.

Premiership with BT was £110m over 3 years £36m a season which will likely reduce due to less games each weekend.

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Post by BigGee Thu 26 Oct 2023, 5:38 pm

I am not an accountant but assuming those figures are correct, it is fairly easy to see where the shortfalls lie.

With 12 clubs, you would imagine that is going to be around 3 million per club per year.

As a decent club budget is probably around £8M per season, that leaves £5M to find from union top ups, gate receipts and beer, sponsorship and the pockets of the rich benefactor.

This has clearly been an impossible task fir the smalker clubs, especially those that don't own grounds and so struggle to max that revenue source and fir even a few of the bigger ones that do.

Covid and its abruption of ground revenue streams was the final nail in the coffin but the business model was not secure even prior to that, in many cases the debts were already there.

Englusb rugby has been living beyond it's means for a long time.

In Scotland it was decided quite some time ago that we could only afford 2 pro teams. We have now got them to the point of being competitively funded as well. There are quite a lot of things not to like about Mark Dodson, but he has put the SRU on a much more stable financial footing.

I don't see the 2 team system ever changing in Scotland and it certainly gives us problems with player pathways and numbers, but it does seem to be financially stable.

I am not sure England has yet worked out what kind of league it can afford. If it was to lose any more clubs and some of those left are not in great shape either, then the decesion about joining with other leagues may be made for them.

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Post by geoff999rugby Thu 26 Oct 2023, 7:35 pm

You cant blame Covid for everything

Wasps shot themselves in the foot with out of control expenditure
Worcester were screwed by a bunch of asset stripping crooks

Good management is vital; Ulster for example lost £900,000 last year which included a loss
of £700,000 due to administrative incompetence. One day we will have a CEO who knows his 'arse from his elbow'
Fortunately we made £1 million over the previous 2 years, which includes Covid.

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Post by LeinsterFan4life Thu 26 Oct 2023, 7:54 pm

Recwatcher16 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:
BigGee wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote:Personally think England not having their own professional league is absolutely disastrous for world rugby. If a nation like England can't sustain their own league, what chance does any new market have? Also if England joins, then there is surely no chance of the game expanding beyond the traditional strongholds there. (Yorkshire gone for good etc etc). It just smacks of yet more short term gains for long term pain, which is kinda what's killed club rugby the last decade or so.






I am slightly intrigued by the prospect of a non French Euro and SA league but at the same time tend to agree that it is bonkers thst England, with all their resources, cannot manage a league of their own.

I can see the attractions to the non English participants in that the TV money, which for us is currently pretty rank, will presumably be improved.

For the English clubs  the dilution of the money you would imagine ia not going to help them at all.

Whatever the solution that comes out from this, the need for a financially sustaibable model is key. The danger for the English clubs is that this might yet mean them shedding a few more clubs.

Is that what they really want? Giving up their major advantage in terms of resources may be a big price to pay for this to go through.

It does seem mad that England can't sustain its own league.
From an outsider's perspective who happens to live in England how the PRL and RFU have ballsed it up is quite impressive.

At some point the PRL got ahead of itself and thought it could run ALL professional rugby (including the national team, as they knew that's where the big money was) which is one of the reasons they surprised the RFU with the BT sport TV deal and demands the European tournaments had to change, they thought the RFU would back them. Unfortunately the head of the RFU (was it Bill then?) was a little peeved that the first he heard of it was when he was called by another union asking what the hell was he playing at.

Think there was quite a bit of distrust between them since then which then led to the first salary cap breech review, in which one of the guilty clubs held the rest hostage by refusing to sign any new participation deals if they were publicly named as being the team fined, and the RFU couldn't do much as it was right before England was hosting the world cup and they didn't want to look like a bunch of clowns (in retrospect they shouldn't have worried about that)

So much promise and great foundations ruined by chasing the money now.

Well that's my opinion


As you say Carpet, your opinion, very few facts.
Wasps and LI went bust due to debt whilst attempting to own a stadium. Covid stopped the major revenue stream, leading to a drain on their balance sheets until they could no longer fund the debts. The current salary cap is to enable all teams to rebuild their balance sheets, which were too low after covid. It's that simple.

Your second paragraph is some conspiracy theory given Unions always run national sides. The difference over the last 25 years is Unions elsewhere owning/running the top club tier of the game, which has led to far more tests on an annual basis to pay for it all and a drift towards top down control rather than bottom up through the grass roots. That's great when your top team is winning but leaves nowhere to go when you are losing - just ask Australia,  two times RWC winner.....

I am not surprised the clubs have historically been wary of the RFU looking at the top down model elsewhere, rather than the longer term French model. The French however have always had a march on English clubs because they have not had to fund or maintain municipal stadia.

I am still curious as to what was changed in the Euro competitions, other than moving the head office from one tax haven to a different one and the sponsorship opportunities drying up - not best timing I grant you. I see the URC have said meritocratic qualification is the way to go, if that is what you refer to.

Domestic club rugby should be about local rivalries - getting on a plane to play a match, is not the long term answer. Where I would agree is the scandalous non promotion of the Championship in England and the RFU need to up their game, create a strategy and stick to it.
Wales and Scotland will eventually realise that the grassroots are the jewel in the crown not elitist franchises, otherwise their historic clubs will disappear having been made an irrelevance and football will then dominate, sadly.
It's not that simple at all though is it? Wasps' demise was predicted by plenty (including their own fans) since 2018, not long after they proclaimed themselves as the "richest club in the world", funnily enough. Why are we talking like professional clubs going bust is a new thing? Clubs have been going bust since at least the 90s...

Exeter chiefs' Tony Rowe said himself that; "We were a bit fragile financially, all the clubs were before Covid". That is quite galling, given Exeter were supposed to be one of the better run clubs.
https://www.bbc.com/sport/rugby-union/67124320

The domestic game is simply unsustainable. I think a lot of benefactors and investors gambled on the continued growth of the club game, which would've looked reasonable in the 00s but since circa 2012-2016, the domestic scene has fallen off a cliff. What has happened to Super rugby for instance is absolutely frightening and really isn't discussed enough by fans or media, we seem to just want to brush that under the carpet instead of trying to understand what the heck is actually going on. I really worry for our new pro leagues in America, South America and Japan.

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Post by Recwatcher16 Thu 26 Oct 2023, 8:59 pm

LeinsterFan4life wrote:
Recwatcher16 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:
BigGee wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote:Personally think England not having their own professional league is absolutely disastrous for world rugby. If a nation like England can't sustain their own league, what chance does any new market have? Also if England joins, then there is surely no chance of the game expanding beyond the traditional strongholds there. (Yorkshire gone for good etc etc). It just smacks of yet more short term gains for long term pain, which is kinda what's killed club rugby the last decade or so.






I am slightly intrigued by the prospect of a non French Euro and SA league but at the same time tend to agree that it is bonkers thst England, with all their resources, cannot manage a league of their own.

I can see the attractions to the non English participants in that the TV money, which for us is currently pretty rank, will presumably be improved.

For the English clubs  the dilution of the money you would imagine ia not going to help them at all.

Whatever the solution that comes out from this, the need for a financially sustaibable model is key. The danger for the English clubs is that this might yet mean them shedding a few more clubs.

Is that what they really want? Giving up their major advantage in terms of resources may be a big price to pay for this to go through.

It does seem mad that England can't sustain its own league.
From an outsider's perspective who happens to live in England how the PRL and RFU have ballsed it up is quite impressive.

At some point the PRL got ahead of itself and thought it could run ALL professional rugby (including the national team, as they knew that's where the big money was) which is one of the reasons they surprised the RFU with the BT sport TV deal and demands the European tournaments had to change, they thought the RFU would back them. Unfortunately the head of the RFU (was it Bill then?) was a little peeved that the first he heard of it was when he was called by another union asking what the hell was he playing at.

Think there was quite a bit of distrust between them since then which then led to the first salary cap breech review, in which one of the guilty clubs held the rest hostage by refusing to sign any new participation deals if they were publicly named as being the team fined, and the RFU couldn't do much as it was right before England was hosting the world cup and they didn't want to look like a bunch of clowns (in retrospect they shouldn't have worried about that)

So much promise and great foundations ruined by chasing the money now.

Well that's my opinion


As you say Carpet, your opinion, very few facts.
Wasps and LI went bust due to debt whilst attempting to own a stadium. Covid stopped the major revenue stream, leading to a drain on their balance sheets until they could no longer fund the debts. The current salary cap is to enable all teams to rebuild their balance sheets, which were too low after covid. It's that simple.

Your second paragraph is some conspiracy theory given Unions always run national sides. The difference over the last 25 years is Unions elsewhere owning/running the top club tier of the game, which has led to far more tests on an annual basis to pay for it all and a drift towards top down control rather than bottom up through the grass roots. That's great when your top team is winning but leaves nowhere to go when you are losing - just ask Australia,  two times RWC winner.....

I am not surprised the clubs have historically been wary of the RFU looking at the top down model elsewhere, rather than the longer term French model. The French however have always had a march on English clubs because they have not had to fund or maintain municipal stadia.

I am still curious as to what was changed in the Euro competitions, other than moving the head office from one tax haven to a different one and the sponsorship opportunities drying up - not best timing I grant you. I see the URC have said meritocratic qualification is the way to go, if that is what you refer to.

Domestic club rugby should be about local rivalries - getting on a plane to play a match, is not the long term answer. Where I would agree is the scandalous non promotion of the Championship in England and the RFU need to up their game, create a strategy and stick to it.
Wales and Scotland will eventually realise that the grassroots are the jewel in the crown not elitist franchises, otherwise their historic clubs will disappear having been made an irrelevance and football will then dominate, sadly.
It's not that simple at all though is it? Wasps' demise was predicted by plenty (including their own fans) since 2018, not long after they proclaimed themselves as the "richest club in the world", funnily enough. Why are we talking like professional clubs going bust is a new thing? Clubs have been going bust since at least the 90s...

Exeter chiefs' Tony Rowe said himself that; "We were a bit fragile financially, all the clubs were before Covid". That is quite galling, given Exeter were supposed to be one of the better run clubs.
https://www.bbc.com/sport/rugby-union/67124320

The domestic game is simply unsustainable. I think a lot of benefactors and investors gambled on the continued growth of the club game, which would've looked reasonable in the 00s but since circa 2012-2016, the domestic scene has fallen off a cliff. What has happened to Super rugby for instance is absolutely frightening and really isn't discussed enough by fans or media, we seem to just want to brush that under the carpet instead of trying to understand what the heck is actually going on. I really worry for our new pro leagues in America, South America and Japan.


That's a somewhat confused logic L4L, as on the one hand you are saying 'Why are we talking like professional clubs going bust is a new thing? Clubs have been going bust since at least the 90s... and then  'the domestic game is simply unsustainable' Given the Premiership is still going, which is it ? The domestic scene still fills stadiums and if tv revenue goes down, it is split between fewer professional clubs anyway.
At the end of the day there will still be a league and if it can't compete with the French wage structures, so what? A European club competition should be the cherry on top, not the cake - that's certainly the French view. We have the 6N for European competition.

Yes, Chris Wright the previous Wasps owner has been quoted as stating the problems began when Richardson moved to Coventry in 2014 and subsequently issued a six year bond which could not be repaid in 2022. All because Wasps never owned a stadium and the revenue stream.

You are moving around a bit, but completely agree Super rugby has run out of road. Australia took the sugar hit of Super rugby rather than investing in a domestic league and as a consequence League and Aussie rules have filled the domestic gap. NZ could simply go back to the NPC and Ranfurly Shield, which they should if they want to halt declining participation levels.

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Post by LeinsterFan4life Thu 26 Oct 2023, 9:38 pm

Recwatcher16 wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote:
Recwatcher16 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:
BigGee wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote:Personally think England not having their own professional league is absolutely disastrous for world rugby. If a nation like England can't sustain their own league, what chance does any new market have? Also if England joins, then there is surely no chance of the game expanding beyond the traditional strongholds there. (Yorkshire gone for good etc etc). It just smacks of yet more short term gains for long term pain, which is kinda what's killed club rugby the last decade or so.






I am slightly intrigued by the prospect of a non French Euro and SA league but at the same time tend to agree that it is bonkers thst England, with all their resources, cannot manage a league of their own.

I can see the attractions to the non English participants in that the TV money, which for us is currently pretty rank, will presumably be improved.

For the English clubs  the dilution of the money you would imagine ia not going to help them at all.

Whatever the solution that comes out from this, the need for a financially sustaibable model is key. The danger for the English clubs is that this might yet mean them shedding a few more clubs.

Is that what they really want? Giving up their major advantage in terms of resources may be a big price to pay for this to go through.

It does seem mad that England can't sustain its own league.
From an outsider's perspective who happens to live in England how the PRL and RFU have ballsed it up is quite impressive.

At some point the PRL got ahead of itself and thought it could run ALL professional rugby (including the national team, as they knew that's where the big money was) which is one of the reasons they surprised the RFU with the BT sport TV deal and demands the European tournaments had to change, they thought the RFU would back them. Unfortunately the head of the RFU (was it Bill then?) was a little peeved that the first he heard of it was when he was called by another union asking what the hell was he playing at.

Think there was quite a bit of distrust between them since then which then led to the first salary cap breech review, in which one of the guilty clubs held the rest hostage by refusing to sign any new participation deals if they were publicly named as being the team fined, and the RFU couldn't do much as it was right before England was hosting the world cup and they didn't want to look like a bunch of clowns (in retrospect they shouldn't have worried about that)

So much promise and great foundations ruined by chasing the money now.

Well that's my opinion


As you say Carpet, your opinion, very few facts.
Wasps and LI went bust due to debt whilst attempting to own a stadium. Covid stopped the major revenue stream, leading to a drain on their balance sheets until they could no longer fund the debts. The current salary cap is to enable all teams to rebuild their balance sheets, which were too low after covid. It's that simple.

Your second paragraph is some conspiracy theory given Unions always run national sides. The difference over the last 25 years is Unions elsewhere owning/running the top club tier of the game, which has led to far more tests on an annual basis to pay for it all and a drift towards top down control rather than bottom up through the grass roots. That's great when your top team is winning but leaves nowhere to go when you are losing - just ask Australia,  two times RWC winner.....

I am not surprised the clubs have historically been wary of the RFU looking at the top down model elsewhere, rather than the longer term French model. The French however have always had a march on English clubs because they have not had to fund or maintain municipal stadia.

I am still curious as to what was changed in the Euro competitions, other than moving the head office from one tax haven to a different one and the sponsorship opportunities drying up - not best timing I grant you. I see the URC have said meritocratic qualification is the way to go, if that is what you refer to.

Domestic club rugby should be about local rivalries - getting on a plane to play a match, is not the long term answer. Where I would agree is the scandalous non promotion of the Championship in England and the RFU need to up their game, create a strategy and stick to it.
Wales and Scotland will eventually realise that the grassroots are the jewel in the crown not elitist franchises, otherwise their historic clubs will disappear having been made an irrelevance and football will then dominate, sadly.
It's not that simple at all though is it? Wasps' demise was predicted by plenty (including their own fans) since 2018, not long after they proclaimed themselves as the "richest club in the world", funnily enough. Why are we talking like professional clubs going bust is a new thing? Clubs have been going bust since at least the 90s...

Exeter chiefs' Tony Rowe said himself that; "We were a bit fragile financially, all the clubs were before Covid". That is quite galling, given Exeter were supposed to be one of the better run clubs.
https://www.bbc.com/sport/rugby-union/67124320

The domestic game is simply unsustainable. I think a lot of benefactors and investors gambled on the continued growth of the club game, which would've looked reasonable in the 00s but since circa 2012-2016, the domestic scene has fallen off a cliff. What has happened to Super rugby for instance is absolutely frightening and really isn't discussed enough by fans or media, we seem to just want to brush that under the carpet instead of trying to understand what the heck is actually going on. I really worry for our new pro leagues in America, South America and Japan.


That's a somewhat confused logic L4L, as on the one hand you are saying 'Why are we talking like professional clubs going bust is a new thing? Clubs have been going bust since at least the 90s... and then  'the domestic game is simply unsustainable' Given the Premiership is still going, which is it ? The domestic scene still fills stadiums and if tv revenue goes down, it is split between fewer professional clubs anyway.
At the end of the day there will still be a league and if it can't compete with the French wage structures, so what? A European club competition should be the cherry on top, not the cake - that's certainly the French view. We have the 6N for European competition.

Yes, Chris Wright the previous Wasps owner has been quoted as stating the problems began when Richardson moved to Coventry in 2014 and subsequently issued a six year bond which could not be repaid in 2022. All because Wasps never owned a stadium and the revenue stream.

You are moving around a bit, but completely agree Super rugby has run out of road. Australia took the sugar hit of Super rugby rather than investing in a domestic league and as a consequence League and Aussie rules have filled the domestic gap. NZ could simply go back to the NPC and Ranfurly Shield, which they should if they want to halt declining participation levels.
I mention clubs going bust since the 90s because you (and many others) seem to blame the latest batch on covid, when it has been happening in the prem since professionalism began. Covid merely accelerated the inevitable for those clubs... check out the ludicrous finances going on at Jersey since they were promoted to the championship for example.

The whole thing is unsustainable because the clubs can't exist, as is, purely on their own. Every team is relying on either a "sugar daddy" or a union to prop them up. Those sugar daddies are now walking away and are not being replaced, LI couldn't even be given away. Nobody wants to touch this.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 7:54 am

So the current costs of professionalism rugby are unsustainable except where they are. Maybe Ireland should show the way and move back to being amateur?

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Post by BigGee Fri 27 Oct 2023, 9:01 am

It is not Ireland's problem though, is it?

They have largely cracked professional rugby, probably better than anyone.

4 well supported and funded teams, good income streams with union subsidy. A decent amount of players to fill the national team.

It explains why for Ireland, both clubs and county are doing very well.

Scotland - can fund both teams but no more and that seriously limits their playing pool

Italy - As Scotland, but with a thriving domestic lesgue and maybe more room for growth.

Wales - very messy. Never really got a workable professional model and to dependent on union funding which barely supports 4 teams.

England - the lesgye has overstretched itself financially. To reliant on benefactors  who do eventually walk away and union money, to thinly spread over the amount of clubs.

We know Scotland, Wales  Ireland and Italy can't manage a pro league on their own. The question remains as to whether England can reset itself. It has the clubs and they players, but the maths is not so good at the moment.

We'll know more this season I suspect, they need to get through it with no more clubs folding. They are almost at a critical mass now and certainly not our of danger.

If the English model is clearly not working, then they will be obliged to look at other options.


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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 9:24 am

BigGee wrote:It is not Ireland's problem though, is it?

They have largely cracked professional rugby, probably better than anyone.

4 well supported and funded teams, good income streams with union subsidy. A decent amount of players to fill the national team.

It explains why for Ireland, both clubs and county are doing very well.

Scotland - can fund both teams but no more and that seriously limits their playing pool

Italy - As Scotland, but with a thriving domestic lesgue and maybe more room for growth.

Wales - very messy. Never really got a workable professional model and to dependent on union funding which barely supports 4 teams.

England - the lesgye has overstretched itself financially. To reliant on benefactors who do eventually walk away and union money, to thinly spread over the amount of clubs.

We know Scotland, Wales Ireland and Italy can't manage a pro league on their own. The question remains as to whether England can reset itself. It has the clubs and they players, but the maths is not so good at the moment.

We'll know more this season I suspect, they need to get through it with no more clubs folding. They are almost at a critical mass now and certainly not our of danger.

If the English model is clearly not working, then they will be obliged to look at other options.


He quite rightly pointed out no ones funding themselves if you discount private owners or union funding. As long as you ignore the sides that do well under these situations he's absolutely correct.

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Post by BigGee Fri 27 Oct 2023, 9:33 am

How you make it work is to some degree irrelevant as long as it does work.

Ireland's model works, some other countries don't currently. That is the ptoblem.


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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 9:39 am

It works so long as the union keeps the funding there. Clubs have gone under when the union pulls that support. So same issue.

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Post by LeinsterFan4life Fri 27 Oct 2023, 10:41 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:So the current costs of professionalism rugby are unsustainable except where they are. Maybe Ireland should show the way and move back to being amateur?
Don't know what you're saying here to be honest.

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Post by geoff999rugby Fri 27 Oct 2023, 10:56 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:It works so long as the union keeps the funding there. Clubs have gone under when the union pulls that support. So same issue.

Ireland have a model that works.
So what if its funded, in part, by the Unions and has some private funding (Leinster and Munster only).

It is sustainable as a professional game unlike England.

We don't need to go back to the Amateur days.

No reason to be apologetic about a well run game (poor Ulster CEO's being the exception)

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 11:52 am

geoff999rugby wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:It works so long as the union keeps the funding there. Clubs have gone under when the union pulls that support. So same issue.

Ireland have a model that works.
So what if its funded, in part, by the Unions and has some private funding (Leinster and Munster only).

It is sustainable as a professional game unlike England.

We don't need to go back to the Amateur days.

No reason to be apologetic about a well run game (poor Ulster CEO's being the exception)

It's sustainable as long as the backers remain putting the money in; the same as in the English game. Its also reliant on other unions and teams in terms of the league. There is no 1 perfect way of doing things and to suggest otherwise is just a bit silly.

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Post by Recwatcher16 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 1:06 pm

geoff999rugby wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:It works so long as the union keeps the funding there. Clubs have gone under when the union pulls that support. So same issue.

Ireland have a model that works.
So what if its funded, in part, by the Unions and has some private funding (Leinster and Munster only).

It is sustainable as a professional game unlike England.

We don't need to go back to the Amateur days.  

No reason to be apologetic about a well run game (poor Ulster CEO's being the exception)

Given this thread is about the English domestic game, I haven't commented on the URC but 'Ireland have a model that works ' is a pretty bold statement given it relies on well funded private schools in Dublin, no salary cap and an opposition (according to my Welsh friends) in terminal decline. If anyone believes they can rely on the SARU as a committed partner, given the unsustainable demands on the test players twelve month season, then that is another big call too.

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Post by geoff999rugby Fri 27 Oct 2023, 2:12 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:

It's sustainable as long as the backers remain putting the money in; the same as in the English game.

No for the simple reason you are not comparing like with like.
In England if a private backer of a club pulls the plug, in the majority of cases the viability of that club is in danger.
In Ireland outside money comes from two quarters:
1. Private investors supplemented in part , or wholly the salary  of selected players.
The instances I am aware of are Heaslip and Sexton at Leinster and money to help persuade Saffers locks move to Munster.
In both cases they of course strengthened the teams but the viability of the teams was never in question - they just would not have been as strong on the field of play.
As I said  before  Connacht and Ulster have received no such cash injection.
2. Private schools in Dublin. Those individuals remain in place because the schools themselves see a value of employing them.
It attracts fee paying parents and brings heighten profile to the schools themselves.
That is very different from a team being at the mercy of a single individual

No 7&1/2 wrote: Its also reliant on other unions and teams in terms of the league.

That is of course true for any cross border league - only France, Japan and a truncated England do not have this issue.
What I would say is Ireland were previously vulnerable to the Welsh pulling out of the league or the regions collapsing all together.
With the Saffers joining we are in a different situation; I sense that the Saffers and the Irish see the mutual benefit of playing against each other.
The URC would survive if any two of the three other nations pulled out. The core powers of the URC are Ireland and Saffers in terms of
playing standards and attracting lucrative TV deals.

No 7&1/2 wrote: There is no 1 perfect way of doing things and to suggest otherwise is just a bit silly.  

Red herring as I never suggested there was one perfect way.
Each country needs to find its own way to sustainability - Ireland have, England has not.

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Post by geoff999rugby Fri 27 Oct 2023, 2:18 pm

Recwatcher16 wrote:
Given this thread is about the English domestic game, I haven't commented on the URC but 'Ireland have a model that works ' is a pretty bold statement given it relies on well funded private schools in Dublin, no salary cap and an opposition (according to my Welsh friends) in terminal decline.
.

See above re Dublin schools and Welsh participation in the URC.

As to a salary cap we cut our cloth according to our ability to pay.
At Ulster we have, in the past, has 5 quality NIQ players - this year we have one (Kitshoff).
That is simply a case of only paying out what we can afford.
Next year Kitshoff and Henderson will be only players on a salary over the upper 100 thousands and possibly lower than that.
Henderson of course is a Central Contract.

Recwatcher16 wrote:
If anyone believes they can rely on the SARU as a committed partner, given the unsustainable demands on the test players twelve month season, then that is another big call too.

From what I hear Saffers teams think the URC is the best thing that has happened to their club game in years.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 2:28 pm

Ah right. The Irish model could never be fallible. Forgot about that.

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Post by Recwatcher16 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 3:05 pm

geoff999rugby wrote:
Recwatcher16 wrote:
Given this thread is about the English domestic game, I haven't commented on the URC but 'Ireland have a model that works ' is a pretty bold statement given it relies on well funded private schools in Dublin, no salary cap and an opposition (according to my Welsh friends) in terminal decline.
.

See above re Dublin schools and Welsh participation in the URC.

As to a salary cap we cut our cloth according to our ability to pay.
At Ulster we have, in the past, has 5 quality NIQ players - this year we have one (Kitshoff).
That is simply a case of only paying out what we can afford.
Next year Kitshoff and Henderson will be only players on a salary over the upper 100 thousands and possibly lower than that.
Henderson of course is a Central Contract.

Recwatcher16 wrote:
If anyone believes they can rely on the SARU as a committed partner, given the unsustainable demands on the test players twelve month season, then that is another big call too.  

From what I hear Saffers teams think the URC is the best thing that has happened to their club game in years.

I quoted the public schools because the IRFU doesn't invest in its own domestic league and so has to get its youth players from somewhere and luckily the Dublin economy has come up trumps, nothing to do with the Irish model.
To talk about salary caps for your specific club is one thing but you avoid the obvious reference, relative to the competitors in the league.
If you believe the SARU are committed, then fair enough. I would be surprised if in the long term their preference wasn't to play the NZ teams rather than the Irish ones though - it's ingrained in their history. Perhaps the new world championship jamboree every two years will generate the cash SA are looking for and kill off any hopes of joining the 6N - in which case why play in the north ?

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Post by Welshmushroom Fri 27 Oct 2023, 5:31 pm

For me the English Premiership is a lot easier to figure out than this tread is going into.

English Rugby has the fanbase to probably support 10 teams. The issue however is English rugby cannot sustain standards in the league purely on home grown players. It simply does not produce enough high quality players to drive a 10/12 team league.

When the game went Pro they got round this problem by bringing in plenty of high quality imports. But this is essentially the same model employed by the Top14 and now give France simply is doing it better they are in direct competition for overseas imports. A battle the premiership is losing. That in turn will affect the appeal to fans over time if the product ends up becoming poorer.

In reality now that France is the top destination for overseas players, I simply do not think England can produce enough players for more than a 6 team league. Having more teams above this limit will just dilute the talent and cause for standards to drop. But 6 teams is not enough to have a competitive league.

So given that they probably want to stay at 10 clubs they will likely struggle in the interim until they can increase the salary cap to start challenging in the Import market again.

On a side note:- None of the URC teams or league have the same challenge as they don't really to heavily on overseas players and most squads are mostly home grown players.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 5:51 pm

So if the prem was to stop importing foreign players that may be an issue. But they're not and the wage cap is due to rise again shortly. Meanwhile in head to heads across Europe the. Leagues are still balanced over the past year and the past 5.

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Post by geoff999rugby Fri 27 Oct 2023, 7:00 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Ah right. The Irish model could never be fallible. Forgot about that.

Red Herring number 2.

Nobody is claiming Irish rugby is infallible, only that it works in so far as it is financially stable and has a measure of success.

Any system needs to be reworked and reevaluated in the light of changing circumstances and that includes Irish rugby.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 7:09 pm

geoff999rugby wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Ah right. The Irish model could never be fallible. Forgot about that.

Red Herring number 2.

Nobody is claiming Irish rugby is infallible, only that it works in so far as it is financially stable and has a measure of success.

Any system needs to be reworked and reevaluated in the light of changing circumstances and that includes Irish rugby.

No fish involved. Look at Saracens. It works,it's financially stable and has a measure of success.

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Post by LeinsterFan4life Fri 27 Oct 2023, 7:28 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Ah right. The Irish model could never be fallible. Forgot about that.
I would say the IRFU are definitely fallible for a whole bunch of reasons.

I think we are near saturation point in terms of TV deals and sponsorship deals. Which I'm sure is why they are talking to the PRL and perhaps entertaining things like taking the 6n off free to air.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Fri 27 Oct 2023, 7:57 pm

Welshmushroom wrote:For me the English Premiership is a lot easier to figure out than this tread is going into.

English Rugby has the fanbase to probably support 10 teams.  The issue however is English rugby cannot sustain standards in the league purely on home grown players.  It simply does not produce enough high quality players to drive a 10/12 team league.

When the game went Pro they got round this problem by bringing in plenty of high quality imports.  But this is essentially the same model employed by the Top14 and now give France simply is doing it better they are in direct competition for overseas imports.  A battle the premiership is losing.  That in turn will affect the appeal to fans over time if the product ends up becoming poorer.

In reality now that France is the top destination for overseas players, I simply do not think England can produce enough players for more than a 6 team league.  Having more teams above this limit will just dilute the talent and cause for standards to drop.  But 6 teams is not enough to have a competitive league.

So given that they probably want to stay at 10 clubs they will likely struggle in the interim until they can increase the salary cap to start challenging in the Import market again.

On a side note:-  None of the URC teams or league have the same challenge as they don't really to heavily on overseas players and most squads are mostly home grown players.

Agree with most of that except that it's not the French league that's causing particular issues. It's the Japanese league. The Aussies and Kiwis who would head to Europe would perhaps pick England over France because of the language barrier. Now they can head to Japan where the coaches are generally Aussie or Kiwi and so they can get by with speaking English and a little bit of Japanese. As opposed to France where the onus is on speaking French in a lot of places. Japan is also a lot closer to home, it's shorter season and good salary also attracts a lot of older players from over here as well.

I think the availability of imports to the agree they were available previously has probably meant that a lot of clubs haven't developed as many players as they perhaps could have done. Needs must has meant that there's now a better group of youngsters emerging following on from clubs investing more heavily on the academy and pathway systems as the well trodden road from the SH became less travelled. Might take a few years before it comes through to a more consistent strength but there's some good young coaches to go with the young players.

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Post by LeinsterFan4life Fri 27 Oct 2023, 9:02 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Ah right. The Irish model could never be fallible. Forgot about that.

Red Herring number 2.

Nobody is claiming Irish rugby is infallible, only that it works in so far as it is financially stable and has a measure of success.

Any system needs to be reworked and reevaluated in the light of changing circumstances and that includes Irish rugby.

No fish involved. Look at Saracens.  It works,it's financially stable and has a measure of success.

Saracens debt: 40.8 million
Saracens CEO: “You can tell that the financial model of rugby doesn’t work and clubs are losing far too much money,”

https://www.cityam.com/exclusive-saracens-ceo-says-financial-model-of-rugby-doesnt-work/

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Post by Recwatcher16 Fri 27 Oct 2023, 10:52 pm

LeinsterFan4life wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Ah right. The Irish model could never be fallible. Forgot about that.

Red Herring number 2.

Nobody is claiming Irish rugby is infallible, only that it works in so far as it is financially stable and has a measure of success.

Any system needs to be reworked and reevaluated in the light of changing circumstances and that includes Irish rugby.

No fish involved. Look at Saracens.  It works,it's financially stable and has a measure of success.

Saracens debt: 40.8 million
Saracens CEO: “You can tell that the financial model of rugby doesn’t work and clubs are losing far too much money,”

https://www.cityam.com/exclusive-saracens-ceo-says-financial-model-of-rugby-doesnt-work/


If that really is Saracens repayable debt, then that is a bargain. Saracens have succeeded in obtaining a stadium in London near their fan base, where Wasps, London Irish and London Welsh have failed.

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