Shrewsbury fan chief calls for review

Supporters’ parliament chief and fan liaison officer Mike Davis has called for an EFL financial review after Shrewsbury posted a £700,000 loss in their accounts this week.

Fan chief Mike Davis (right) with CEO Brian Caldwell
Fan chief Mike Davis (right) with CEO Brian Caldwell

Davis insists that the ‘insane’ regulations surrounding parachute payments in particular, as well as the way in which cash is filtered to help lower league clubs survive, need updating.

The worst is yet to come for clubs of Shrewsbury’s ilk as the government’s stance on PAYE and tax ends, as well as the furlough scheme, with losses in future years’ accounts set to dwarf that of the figures up to June 2020.

“The whole structure around the way money is distributed down the leagues needs to change,” said Town fan and Shrewsbury business owner Davis.

“The parachute payment system is ridiculous. You look at them, I think the top eight in the Championship’s parachute payments equates to the rest of the Championship, League One and Two put together, which is just insane.

“The Premier League want to ensure clubs going up don’t de-value their product by being weak. But at the same time they’ve got to look further down the pyramid. If it’s the same clubs going up and down that de-values it, takes away the drama.

“Sunderland are the big one in our league, still getting parachute payments in League One, it’s absolutely crazy.”

Davis felt Town’s losses over the first three months of the pandemic were entirely expected, but the increased £3.3million cash reserves show the increased importance of chairman Roland Wycherley’s prudent running of the club.

He said: “I don’t think it is unexpected, every club for the next two sets of accounts will expect losses. The next set will show an even bigger loss.

“EFL loans and payment helps with cash in the bank, which is why I believe that has gone up.

“What it brings home is the mentality of the chairman, while supporters have moaned in the past we’ve not pushed the boat out as much as we should’ve done – I was one of them –”This has proven he has run the club incredibly well.”

“Any loss is horrendous, but other clubs’ accounts will show we’re probably still in the top 10 per cent of clubs in regards to minimising our losses.

“It will be an incredibly difficult 12 or 18 months for clubs when PAYE and tax is needed to be paid back, clubs will start to struggle more.”

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