Giving Orient fans a voice
Leyton Orient Fans' Trust
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Football Governance

Last week, Port Vale became the 92nd insolvency in the top five divisions of English football since 1992. At the same time, the Football Authorities released their joint response to the report on Football Governance. Supporters Direct have issued a statement here which contains the response in full.

At this stage, the proposals are not what anyone was hoping for. Although the authorities have proposed the introduction of a licensing system, they only go as far as addressing the principle of licensing.

The substantive issues are not being addressed, namely that too many football clubs are failing to safeguard their futures and are instead spending far more than they can afford, chasing the dream of progressing to the next level on the football pitch. The statistics are shocking:

  • 92 clubs from level one (the Premier League) to level five (the Football Conference Premier) have become insolvent (bankruptcy, administration, etc.) since 1992; the equivalent of the entire top-four divisions of English professional football
  • Portsmouth are in their second period of administration in less than two seasons
  • Darlington are in their fourth episode of insolvency in 15 seasons.

Supporters Direct's proposals for licensing, including a clear proposal for supporter engagement through supporters' trusts, can be found here.

Like SD, LOFT welcomes proposals to help supporters' trusts to increase their influence in club governance and ownership. More detailed discussions will be required to see if these measures will be sufficient to help deliver the pledge from the Coalition Government " to support the co-operative ownership of football clubs by their supporters".

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