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Page last updated at 22:33 GMT, Wednesday, 7 April 2010 23:33 UK

Lord Mawhinney demands relegation for debt-ridden clubs

Lord Mawhinney
Mawhinney oversaw the rebranding of the League in 2004

Lord Brian Mawhinney ended his reign as chairman of the Football League by suggesting clubs which operate with unsustainable debt should be relegated.

Currently clubs which go into administration receive a 10-point penalty but Mawhinney feels the sanctions should be stronger.

In his farewell letter Mawhinney also warned that clubs need to control players' wages and agents' fees.

Greg Clarke will replace Mawhinney, who will become honorary League president.

Clarke is the former chief executive of Cable and Wireless Communications and officially takes charge of the Football League on Thursday.


Mawhinney, who took the reins at the Football League in January 2003, was a controversial figure for fans of some clubs - particularly those who suffered points deductions after going into administration, a rule which was brought in for the 2004/05 season.

But in his final address Mawhinney went even further, suggesting a 'Fit to Trade' framework to deal with unsustainable debt with relegation to a lower division the punishment rather than a points deduction.

In a lengthy letter Mawhinney outlined some of the major issues facing the League and suggested some potential solutions.

Football League chief wants 'reasonable transparency'

The suggestions included a return to the system of clubs sharing gate receipts to create a "morally more sustainable and therefore more attractive brand".

He also advised that directors who wish to give money to clubs should either gift it or buy equity, rather than making loans which can be a burden on clubs in the future.

Mawhinney also urged clubs to stand firm in their resistance to joining the transfer window system which governs player movement in the top flights of many leagues around the world.

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see also
Football League appoints new boss
12 Mar 10 |  Football
Mawhinney to quit as League chief
12 Nov 09 |  Football
New League crackdown on ownership
08 Oct 09 |  Football
Mawhinney rubbishes two-tier plan
01 Jun 09 |  Football
Gill & Mawhinney join 2018 board
12 Oct 08 |  Internationals
League gets revamp
10 Jun 04 |  Football
Mawhinney handed top post
19 Dec 02 |  Football

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