Luton Town (white) and Cambridge United are two of the 18 teams to sign up to Fair Game so far

Fair Game: Luton Town lead 10 EFL clubs calling for financial reforms in football

Abolishing parachute payments is one of a number of reforms proposed by 10 English Football League clubs, led by Championship side Luton Town, hoping to make football fairer and sustainable.

The ‘Fair Game’ group wants to see an independent regulator with powers to oversee the men’s and women’s game.

A salary cap is also needed to address “revenue imbalance”, the group said.

“We need transparency. We need to incentivise good clubs,” said one of Fair Game’s ambassadors John Scales.

Former Wimbledon, Liverpool and England defender Scales said it was vital EFL clubs “end the culture of gambling” with their finances.

“Let’s redistribute the parachute payments and give it to the clubs that are run well,” he added.

“Let’s bring in a system that protects a club’s crown jewels – the badge, the name, the nickname, the colours, its location. We want our clubs to be there for the long haul.”

The Fair Game group includes Luton from the second tier, Accrington, AFC Wimbledon, Cambridge and Lincoln in League One and Bristol Rovers, Carlisle, Leyton Orient, Newport and Tranmere in League Two.

A further eight teams from lower down the pyramid are also on board, while it says it is in discussions with “dozens more clubs”.

The group’s report, ‘Solutions For Our National Game’, rejects the idea that a reformed Football Association could perform the role.

It says the FA “is not independent, as it is in direct competition with the professional leagues for sponsorship and national team players’ time” and because it is a “commercial actor” in the game.

Fair Game argues that parachute payments are “not fit for purpose” and clubs “must be more transparent and consistent in their financial reporting”.

The proposals also demand that owners’ and directors’ tests “are more robust” and highlighted the importance of consistency from clubs and governing bodies around equality, diversity and inclusion.

Original article 01.07.21 on the BBC News website

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