Fair Game – a collection of clubs which is campaigning for major changes to football governance – issued a hard-hitting statement
A football campaign group has branded the Derby County crisis a “catastrophe” as it called for the Government to implement the recommendations of a Fan-Led Review.
On Monday, the Rams were still waiting for a preferred bidder to be named by the club’s administrators, Quantuma, with former Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley said to be in pole position.
But time was running out as the club needs to prove to the EFL that it has enough funds to complete the season.
With the future of the Rams hanging in the balance, Fair Game – a recently-formed collection of clubs which is campaigning for major changes to football governance – issued a hard-hitting statement.
“As the EFL deadline for Derby to find a financial solution for the remainder of the year looms, Fair Game is reiterating its call to the Government to implement the Fan-Led Review and legislate to protect the future of our national game,” read the statement.
“Our national game is in crisis. More than half of clubs in the top 4 divisions who declared their finances in 2020 were financially insolvent. This leaves clubs, traditions and communities at the whim of owners and the precipice of being one bad owner from extinction.
“The warning signs from the winding up of Bury and Macclesfield haven’t been heeded. And now we have Derby County. Derby County, a founding member of the Football League. Derby County, twice champions of the Football League staring down the barrel of liquidation.”
Niall Couper, Fair Game’s CEO, says Derby must be the last club to experience such a crisis due to financial mismanagement.
He said: “The situation at Derby is nothing short of a catastrophe. Fans of Derby have to be the last to face these challenges.
“Football needs the Government to implement legislation to support the recommendations in the Fan-Led Review and to incentivise clubs to run themselves sustainability to protect our national game from disaster.”
The Fair Game statement added: “The Fan Led Review supports stronger financial controls, proper fan engagement and meaningful equality standards.
“And that it's all overseen by an independent regulator that holds the license to enforce these changes. Fair Game and leading regulatory experts, LCP, believe this can be brought together by incentivising clubs through the Sustainability Index.
“The Index marks all professional clubs on four criteria – Financial Sustainability, Good Governance, Equality Standards and Fan & Community Engagement. The higher a club scores the more money it gets.
“The Sustainability Index is a key part of Fair Game’s manifesto, which is supported by 32 clubs in England and Wales. It is an approach that has consistently worked in other regulated industries, and it would transform football.”
Fair Game members include clubs from the Championship to non-league, including Luton Town, Lincoln City and Chesterfield.


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