The much-praised German 50+1 ownership model is one that the government is looking into for English football clubs amid the fall-out from the collapsed European Super League proposal.
Football’s future has dominated the headlines this week following the announcement – and subsequent collapse – of plans for a breakaway competition, each of the Premier League‘s ‘big six’ part of a proposal for a tournament which created huge controversy.
The Super League included guaranteed annual entry for its founding clubs and was met with huge backlash over a lack of sporting integrity, whilst it has further highlighted the greed and increased the scrutiny of ownerships.
Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, this week said that a ‘root and branch investigation into the governance of football’ will be conducted, and it will look at how to ‘promote the role of fans in that governance’
Former sports minister, Tracey Crouch, will lead the review and has discussed the potential changes to English football’s ownership rules.
“Football means so much to so many people in this country and my review will be firmly focused on the fans,” said Crouch. “It will look closely at the issues of governance, ownership and finance and take the necessary steps to retain the game’s integrity, competitiveness and, most importantly, the bond that clubs have with its supporters and the local community.”
Oliver Dowden, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said authorities must ‘learn the lessons from the crisis in football financing’ during the ongoing pandemic and admits the events of the past week will lead to changes in legislation and confirmed that the German system will be looked into.
The 50+1 model, which ensures members of clubs – the fans – retain 50% of the voting rights, +1 share to protect against the influence of external investors.
“Naturally we’ve got to learn the lessons from the crisis in football financing during the COVID crisis,” Dowden told talkSPORT on Thursday. “We need to put this on a more sustainable footing.
“For example in the German leagues they have a different governance structure so it’s right we look at those things.
“The PM was good, I had a meeting with him and fans on Tuesday and he said we had to do whatever it took and that includes legislation and if legislation is required we’ll do that.
“But the immediate legislation we were preparing to pull together was to deal with this immediate threat from this outrageous proposal.”