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Football club governance—time to reform the current ownership model?

Football club governance—time to reform the current ownership model?
Published on: 29 October 2019
Published by: LexisPSL
  • Football club governance—time to reform the current ownership model?
  • What is the current regulatory regime for football club ownership?
  • The ‘fit and proper person’ test has on multiple occasions come under fire for being too lenient, and there have been calls for introducing a subjective element to the test. Have there been any recent developments in regard to this?
  • What happens in sports leagues in other jurisdictions?
  • Some English clubs such as Portsmouth and AFC Wimbledon have employed a fan ownership model following financial turmoil. Is that a viable alternative?
  • How would you assess the likelihood of reform to today’s ownership model?
  • How great is the insolvency risk in English football?
  • What insolvency process is Bury FC now in, and what is the impact on creditors?

Article summary

Corporate analysis: In light of Bury FC’s recent collapse—with Bolton Wanderers narrowly escaping the same fate—owners of football clubs have again come under scrutiny. Richard Barham, partner in the corporate department at Dentons, discusses the ownership model of English football clubs, saying that despite the flaws under the current model, it is uncertain whether the problems would be solved by implementing a different ownership model. or take a trial to read the full analysis.

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