Premier League back spending cap plan despite Man Utd, City and Aston Villa opposition

Last season that club, earning the lowest from central Premier League distributions, Southampton, were paid out £103.6 million – a figure that combines a baseline equal share of broadcast deals, live television game “facility” bonuses and merit awards for league places.

The overall spending calculation will account for player wages, agents fees paid by the club and transfer amortisation. Analysis by Kieran Maguire, a football finance lecturer at Liverpool University, shows that, if that limit was applied immediately, only Chelsea would have to cut spending.

Currently profitability and sustainability rules (PSR) are based on permitted losses of £105 million over a three-year monitoring period which has in recent months led to Premier League charges for Everton, Nottingham Forest and Leicester City, relegated last season. The multiple charges against Manchester City also include PSR breaches.

There are concerns from the likes of United that setting the percentage of turnover a club can spend on wages and fees would prevent less wealthy clubs from being competitive. Earlier this month the clubs agreed that they would introduce the rules gradually with the new system shadowing PSR next season and then being used exclusively from the start of 2025-26.
The Premier League clubs will begin with that squad cost limit set at a higher level, giving the clubs the right to spend up to 85 per cent on wages and agents’ fees, with a view to it being scaled down closer to Uefa’s 70 per cent benchmark.

However, the PFA has now taken issue with the prospect of any strict limits on wage expenditure. “We’ll wait to see details of proposals but we would oppose any measure that would place a ‘hard’ cap on player wages,” the representative body said. “There is an established process in place to ensure proposals like this, which would directly impact our members, have to be properly consulted on.”

The vote to allow talks to progress to a second stage took place in central London. Last season Manchester City had the largest wage bill, £423 million, but that figure accounts for all staff expenditure, not just players. Agent expenditure was £51.5 million, while the club’s transfer amortisation figure was £145 million. At least one club figure believes the anchoring cap should only be tied to wages.

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