Government outlines stance over independent regulator as Premier League clubs air grievances
The government says it will work "at pace" to explore how to establish an independent regulator that will oversee the governance of football, with secretary of state Nadine Dorries confiming in a statement to the Commons and Lords that it endorses the leading recommendation in Tracey Crouch's fan-led review.
Last night Crouch published a 162-page report after six months of speaking to stakeholders across the game, including 130 supporter groups and executives from clubs at all levels of the pyramid. The review makes a total of 47 recommendations, including a transfer levy being added to deals involving Premier League clubs, and many will be dependent on a regulator that is created by an Act of Parliament.
While top-flight teams are expected to lobby against the introduction of a regulator, with Aston Villa's Christian Purslow the first to speak publicly against the idea, its existence will ultimately come down to willpower at Westminster.
"We are at a turning point for football in this country," Dorries said in a statement. "The review is a detailed and worthy piece of work that will require a substantive response and plan of action from across government.
"But the primary recommendation of the review is clear, and one the government chooses to endorse in principle today: that football requires a strong, independent regulator to secure the future of our national game.
"The government will now work at pace to determine the most effective way to deliver an independent regulator, and any powers that might be needed."
Speaking to football.london on Wednesday evening, Crouch said that she was "optimistic" that the government will follow through on her proposals and believes the independent regulator could feature in the next Queen's Speech.
“It’s up to the government to make a statement on it, to decide what it agrees with,” she said. “Hopefully all of it because it is a package. In terms of the implementation it will require statutory regulation so it will have to bring forward that legislation, presumably in the next Queen’s Speech.
“There is a recommendation in there around establishing a shadow regulator so they can start forming the principles, guidelines and everything else so it can hit the ground running.”