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Home: Non-League Football Discussion: Restructuring Discussion:
The New Economy: Should restructuring be restructured ?

 

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Mr. T
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Mar 3, 2009, 10:03 AM

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Post #51 of 66 (2922 views)
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Re: [PaulC] The New Economy: Should restructuring be restructured ? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Stature?

How can a country like Spain have a far wider pyramid than England with each level occupied by far more clubs? Do Spanish clubs have greater stature?


Isn't this a false comparison? Spain is almost three times the size of England (though with roughly the same population). How many clubs does it have? What standards does its FA insist on? Where does regionalisation start? Presumably higher than in England, given its size. Are you suggesting that Spain's pyramid be used as a model for England?

I was merely pointing out that since 2004, the shape of the pyramid has changed, the current Steps 5 and 6 have been weakened (in some areas more than others) by constant upward movement and there are no new clubs being formed at this level to replace them (not 60-70, anyway). With the FA's insistence on ground standards, there are, as I said, only so many clubs of sufficient stature i.e. those that meet the gradings and are viable for each level. Even in our small country, some are finding it a bit of a struggle (at all levels). One of the constant themes on this forum is the difficulty at steps 5 and 6 of forming leagues or maintaining the numbers of those that exist.


When the Lancashire Combination or Cheshire County League were on the second level of the non-league pyramid, was there a problem?


I would argue that they were never at the second level of the pyramid, given that this only really began in 1982, the year that they merged to form the NWCL. Both had lost clubs to the NPL (1968) and the APL (1979). The NWCL lost even more in 1987 when the NPL added a second division. That looks like a loss of stature to me. The LC and CCL were, like the Midland Counties League, 'bigger' leagues in the past with big clubs but all that's gone on since 1979 has changed the football map radically and not necessarily for the better. Introducing these two leagues here in the way that you have seems to me to be a bit of a distraction from the argument.


(This post was edited by Mr. T on Mar 3, 2009, 10:03 AM)


vienna1964
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Re: [Mr. T] The New Economy: Should restructuring be restructured ? [In reply to] Can't Post or


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Spot on Mr. T.

If there were to be any renaissence in footie, perhaps being triggered by economic trends... then there should be a wholesale rethink, rather than a reshuffle of tired old ideas and minimal alteration ! At least, it is such 'blue-sky' thinking I was looking for when asking the original question.



Um, you'll have to be a little clearer about which spot I'm on, Vienna! I was arguing against a wholesale change from top to bottom (as proposed by some above and which appears to be the broad thrust of your 'starter') but I am certainly in favour of significant changes from the Conference downwards. It is my impression (no analysis to confirm this) that proposals put forward by a majority of forum members are slanted very heavily towards reducing travelling without taking into account other factors and without presenting the financial case, other than an instinctive feeling that travelling costs a lot (but not as much as last summer, with petrol having come down from �5.40 a gallon to �4).

Why do we want to reduce travelling? Because we don't want to get up at 8am on a Saturday morning? Because we don't want to use a tankful of fuel to get to an away game? Because we want great hordes of opposition supporters in our grounds every week? There's merit in all of these but reducing the geographical footprint is no guarantee it'll happen. After all, if your team is playing like **** or the weather's foul, you might not bother anyway! And forgive me if I've missed it in all of the preceding posts but there is always the argument of, for want of a better phrase, the vertical and the horizontal. If you reduce the geographical size of a division but maintain its complement of clubs, you mix big 'uns and small 'uns � until the big 'uns all get promoted, and then......

All our proposals are based on a snap-shot of the current system. A brand new, top-to-bottom set-up might work for a while and then new problems arise. Just because we're in a recession doesn't mean we should rip it up and start again but there may be shortcomings that need to be dealt with irrespective of economic conditions. I still think Steps 2-4 are wrong but I'm not sure what the precise answer is except to repeat what I said above: "some of the post-2004 changes ought to be undone and the pyramid flattened out a bit but at which level do we start?" Those changes have moved many feeder league clubs up the pyramid and made the foundations a bit unsteady (a fact debated hotly and sometimes intemperately on here). Since 2004, there has been a net movement of more than 60 from what is now Step 5 to Step 4, and more than 70 from Step 6 to Step 5 (that is clubs moving upwards and replaced not by relegation from above but by promotion/elevation/election from below). There are only so many clubs of sufficient stature for each level of the Pyramid. Carry on pushing them up by creating yet more new divisions at Steps 1-4 and the whole thing will fall over.


I'm sorry I wasn't clear Mr. T. I was praising your more detailed sweep of thought more than any particular idea or principle you'd vouchsafed.

I ought to stress that the major assumption I was attempting to introduce at the beginning of the thread is the base conceit and premise that we are currently experiencing 'the beginning of the end' in terms of the global economy and concommitantly we are entering a phase in human existence whereby almost everything we do and all we have previously taken for granted will be changed to a lesser or greater degree !

I DO believe that global warming; or at least 'irreversible worldwide climatic alteration'; is imminent and may not be 'rescued' to that regime which would have prevailed had we never discovered fossil fuels ! Thereby there WILL be seismic changes afoot, maybe some sooner than most folks realise.
It was with this fact in mind that I made mention of Obama - for once we seem to have an important world leader with a keen appreciation that we may have passed that climatic 'tipping point' already and who actively embraces scientific thought - that may succour mitigations to the effects of global warming in all its finesse.

In other words, I am saying that we should not continue to blithely assume that the petrochemical industry will suffice to meet our energy and/or transportation needs for the near-long-term future and it really does look like alternative fuels need a massive 'kick up the @rse' now; not later; in order to seamlessly replace that to which we are used. In which case it would not be intemperate to preempt the putative outfall by 'cutting one's cloth' sufficient to ride the storm now !

Do not forget that any meltdown in terms of global power industries would lead to very many changes in almost all other walks of life... and it is these deeper ramifications which I am intending to address and maybe redress; at least in the footie-world; by opening this thread.
We are not just talking the transportation of 20 individuals to an away game here when we speak ! We are including the increased costs of just about anything and everything which requires fuel in its manufacture and or transportation/provision to the public at large - i.e. = everything !!!

Without doubt, even with the soonest adoption of the most presciently economic reevaluation, there are going to be casualties... a veritable bloodbath methinks and it will only be those who have prepared themselves best and earliest who will survive the oncoming 'extinction event'.

There are going to be immensely high-profile casualties as well, not just the non-league riff-raff who will suffer. In fact in non-league, we are probably better insulated against things than are the professionals ! What happens to the Manchester Uniteds and the Chelseas when the forces of world finance strip them of their current income-streams ? Oligarchs and the like pulling out, sponsors pulling out, TV contracts waning (see today's news about Setanta & ITV !) and the fans stay away in ever increasing numbers ?
Then there's the 'domino effect' whereby one club going to the wall and writing off its debt causes a cascade down the line - where does that stop ? And when several sets of incestuously conjoined professional clubs collapse arm-in-arm, there will be retro-active legislation to prevent more teams from living beyond their means... and several more high-profile clubs will be sacrificed in order to 'steady the ship' !

Impossible ? I do not think so ! Likely ? Not necessarily everything above that I've mentined will come to pass, either immediately, in the medium future or at all... however I do think that quite a lot of it will appear somewhere, sometime before too long !

I have not yet worked out any kind of sensible restructuring which might be yet publishable, but I am slowly working on it... and it's looking mightily like there would need to be a reasonable amount of change within the professional ranks, certainly providing for minimally a North/South degree of regionalisation at/by the level 4/5 area, if not at level 3/4. I'd also anticipate the highest Step in non-league embracing at least four regions - if that gives folks an idea where I'm going ? Definitely angling toward a much fatter/flatter pyramid model, with concommitant easing of grading requirements per level, but with much more swingeing requirement to achieve the level-grade before promotions would be allowed.



I APOLOGISE UNRESERVEDLY TO EACH AND EVERY PERSON ON THIS FORUM WHO HAS FELT LET-DOWN BY MY INIMICABLE AND DEPLORABLE BEHAVIOUR OF OCTOBER 28th. 2009. ESPECIALLY TO BRIAN, WHO IS A MARVELLOUS GENTLEMAN AND IS THE LAST PERSON HERE WHO SHOULD HAVE TO PUT UP WITH SUCH UNDESERVED PERSONAL CHARACTER-ASSASSINATION. LET IT BE KNOWN THAT A PRIVATE PERSONAL APOLOGY WAS SENT, BUT WAS SEEN INSUFFICIENT. FAIR ENOUGH.

(This post was edited by vienna1964 on Mar 3, 2009, 12:01 PM)


PaulC
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Mar 3, 2009, 1:21 PM

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With the FA's insistence on ground standards, there are, as I said, only so many clubs of sufficient stature i.e. those that meet the gradings and are viable for each level.</quote>

Well I agree with you here. Ground grading regulations are not written on tablets of stone, however.



When the Lancashire Combination or Cheshire County League were on the second level of the non-league pyramid, was there a problem?


I would argue that they were never at the second level of the pyramid, given that this only really began in 1982, the year that they merged to form the NWCL. Both had lost clubs to the NPL (1968) and the APL (1979). The NWCL lost even more in 1987 when the NPL added a second division. That looks like a loss of stature to me. The LC and CCL were, like the Midland Counties League, 'bigger' leagues in the past with big clubs but all that's gone on since 1979 has changed the football map radically and not necessarily for the better. Introducing these two leagues here in the way that you have seems to me to be a bit of a distraction from the argument.


Not at all. I'm merely pointing out that a far flatter pyramid is feasible. When the NPL was the top of the northern part of non-league football, leagues such as the Lancs Comb and Cheshire League fed into it directly - they were at the second highest level of non-league football in the country. Of course empires developed and the NPL grew and the APL took off but was this necessarily any better for those clubs whose 'natural' home had been the Lancs Comb or Cheshire League. Once the novelty of meeting new, more distant clubs had worn off can anyone honestly say, hand on heart that they prefer meeting clubs from 100 miles away rather than having more local opponents?


I would love to see a regionalised FL Division 2, absorbing the Conference National.

Below that at Step 1, I would like to see a 4 division Conference taking in the current Conference North and South along with the top clubs from NPL Premier etc.

At Step 2 I would like to see 8 divisions, administered (two each) by the NPL, IL, SL and a new Midland league

At Step 3 I would like to see 16 divisions based on the current 14 at Step 5. My initial thoughts would be to demerge the NWC and NCE making 4 leagues out of the current two. However, I'd also be tempted to promote the SW Peninsula League at the expense of one division in the SE/Home Counties.

To the drawing board.


hucknallite
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Mar 3, 2009, 1:24 PM

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Post #54 of 66 (2879 views)
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Re: [vienna1964] The New Economy: Should restructuring be restructured ? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

As regards global warming the cost of combating it has been seriously underestimated. The IPCC put an upper estimate on the social cost of Carbon at $95 per tonne of Carbon Dioxide. Which is equivalent to about 15p a litre of petrol. We already pay 52.35p duty + 15% VAT. Even if this 15p was added on top it wouldn't cut consumption by the necessary 80%. Clearly then the social cost is well above $95 per tonne. Considering that this is the basis for the Stern Report's estimate that it will cost 1% of GDP to cut greenhouse gases we're left with the assumption that it will cost a lot more (Back of envelope figures suggest at least 5%). So we either shrink the economy or put up taxes (specifically a carbon tax). The UK economy shrank 1.8% last year and there are already calls for heads to roll and we can all remember the furore over the 10p tax rates and the fuel tax protests in 2000. So basically unless all politicians start telling us the truth we screwed. Fat chance of that!


VP
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Mar 3, 2009, 3:24 PM

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It is my impression (no analysis to confirm this) that proposals put forward by a majority of forum members are slanted very heavily towards reducing travelling without taking into account other factors and without presenting the financial case, other than an instinctive feeling that travelling costs a lot (but not as much as last summer, with petrol having come down from 5.40 a gallon to 4).


I don't understand why everyone keeps going on about reduced travelling being the way forward. Some teams in the Conference have weekly wage bills of 10000+. Even travelling on a Friday and putting the players up in a hotel for the night won't come to anywhere near that. If travelling were reduced, say by regionalising League 2 and the Conference Premier as is often mentioned on here, then I'm sure teams would only spend any money they save on players wages.
It's not travelling that's causing clubs financial problems in most cases, it's over-paying players (in my opinion).
I realise there are some teams lower down the pyramid where travelling costs will be quite a high percentage of total costs but no-one's forcing these teams to go up just as no-one's forcing teams to join the National Division of the Conference.
Not many teams turn down the chance of promotion so travelling costs maybe aren't as high on a lot of club's agendas as some people on here seem to think.
And before anyone says anything I'm well aware of teams in the North East and other areas not taking promotion as much as everyone would like but that's the individual club's choice which is all that matters.


hucknallite
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Mar 3, 2009, 3:39 PM

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Re: [VP] The New Economy: Should restructuring be restructured ? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

True VP but part of the problem is that long distances mean long travelling time and as you say often overnight hotels. Semi-pro players are only willing to make that level of commitment for a minimum amount of money. So longer distances push up wages.


Mr. T
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Mar 3, 2009, 3:53 PM

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Post #57 of 66 (2843 views)
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Re: [PaulC] The New Economy: Should restructuring be restructured ? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

PaulC wrote: "I'm merely pointing out that a far flatter pyramid is feasible."

Which I had suggested might be a better way to go as I didn't think the post-2004 changes had been benficial. I'm not sure why you disagreed with me!

As for your proposals, perhaps you should work out how many clubs would go up from their current levels and how many would go down. There might be pretty stiff resistance from some clubs to what they might see as a loss of status. And what would it do for the Step 5 leagues? Nevertheless, I agree that some flattening out looks desirable; I don't think that the current Conference regional divisions (or SLP and NPLP) are right for some smaller clubs.


PaulC
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Mar 3, 2009, 3:58 PM

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As for your proposals, perhaps you should work out how many clubs would go up from their current levels and how many would go down. There might be pretty stiff resistance from some clubs to what they might see as a loss of status. And what would it do for the Step 5 leagues?


I'm baffled by your reply.

A flatter pyramid will raise the 'level' of clubs, not lower it.

Step 5 leagues would become Step 3.


Mr. T
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Re: [PaulC] The New Economy: Should restructuring be restructured ? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Sorry, badly explained.

With 22 clubs per division, your proposals would create a new Step 1 of 88 clubs, 44 of them the existing Step 2 clubs and 44 from Step 3. In other words, current Conference regional clubs, though one step higher in the structure, might regard their new divisions as inferior because half of the clubs would be from the level below. At Step 2, there would be 176 clubs: 22 from the current Step 3, all 132 from Step 4 (presume full complement) and 22 from Step 5. So 22 clubs from the ILP, SLP and NPLP would find themselves mixing with Div 1 and feeder league clubs. They too might regard that as a demotion in standards, even though they would also have risen a level. Of course, some might regard playing their inferiors a worthwhile price to pay for a rise up the ranks, but it is a consideration.

Similarly, would current FL2 clubs (i.e. Div 4 in English) want to be in a division including the lesser lights from the Conference national division?


(This post was edited by Mr. T on Mar 3, 2009, 5:10 PM)


PaulC
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Sorry, badly explained.

With 22 clubs per division, your proposals would create a new Step 1 of 88 clubs, 44 of them the existing Step 2 clubs and 44 from Step 3. In other words, current Conference regional clubs, though one step higher in the structure, would regard their new divisions as inferior because half of the clubs would be from the level below.


I suspect the Conference regional clubs, now at the top of the NL pyramid and one step away from the FL would happily accept some 'inferior' opponents.



In Reply To
At Step 2, there would be 176 clubs: 22 from the current Step 3, all 132 from Step 4 (presume full complement) and 22 from Step 5. So 22 clubs from the ILP, SLP and NPLP find themselves mixing with Div 1 and feeder league clubs. They too would regard that as a demotion in standards, even though they would also have risen a level.


154 happy bunnies and 22 clubs whi0 have risen a step, have less travelling and have more local derbies. I don't think many of the 22 would be that unhappy (especially since a dozen of them would have been relegated anyway)


In Reply To
And would current FL2 clubs (i.e. Div 4 in English) want to be in a division including the lesser lights from the Conference national division?


Possibly not.


vienna1964
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As for your proposals, perhaps you should work out how many clubs would go up from their current levels and how many would go down. There might be pretty stiff resistance from some clubs to what they might see as a loss of status. And what would it do for the Step 5 leagues?


I'm baffled by your reply.

A flatter pyramid will raise the 'level' of clubs, not lower it.

Step 5 leagues would become Step 3.


A flatter pyramid; against my normal preferences; is exactly what I now find myself proposing. As I intimated beforehand, this would require adjustments being made to expectations in respect of grading regulations. There would be fewer Steps, ergo larger step-gaps between new grading levels - and I further suggested that this would present the opportunity to tighten up the whole process.
Essentially I vouchsafe that each and every team should be allowed a 12-month-only period of grace to achieve the grading requirement for the division in which it finds itself - or be summarily relegated. This would still allow teams to take a promotion whilst working toward a relevant grading, enabling the application for grants, etc. and I'd expect the FA/leagues to progress these applications and not leave this to the clubs themselves.
Should then any grant be delayed through no fault of the club, extra allowance might be further made to encompass this fairly.

In respect of the statement "A flatter pyramid will raise the 'level' of clubs, not lower it."... that would be arguable either way.
I contend that the Step number comparison would not be particularly relevant or meaningful when comparing pre- with post-restructuring on the suggested basis - much in the same way that representing (say) the 1960's non-league model with Step numbers is ditto.

Whilst I'm not yet far advanced in finalising a model for this discussion, I liken that which I have so far come up with to the pre-Division Four system as far as the upper (pro.) echelons are concerned, whilst the topmost semipro. levels might fairly be compared with the pre-1978 model



I APOLOGISE UNRESERVEDLY TO EACH AND EVERY PERSON ON THIS FORUM WHO HAS FELT LET-DOWN BY MY INIMICABLE AND DEPLORABLE BEHAVIOUR OF OCTOBER 28th. 2009. ESPECIALLY TO BRIAN, WHO IS A MARVELLOUS GENTLEMAN AND IS THE LAST PERSON HERE WHO SHOULD HAVE TO PUT UP WITH SUCH UNDESERVED PERSONAL CHARACTER-ASSASSINATION. LET IT BE KNOWN THAT A PRIVATE PERSONAL APOLOGY WAS SENT, BUT WAS SEEN INSUFFICIENT. FAIR ENOUGH.


Veteran
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Essentially I vouchsafe that each and every team should be allowed a 12-month-only period of grace to achieve the grading requirement for the division in which it finds itself - or be summarily relegated. This would still allow teams to take a promotion whilst working toward a relevant grading, enabling the application for grants, etc. and I'd expect the FA/leagues to progress these applications and not leave this to the clubs themselves.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I've been advocating this for ages - resolves the dilemma of "spend it on the team or spend it on the ground" and might also do away with a lot of these "marriage of convenience" groundshares to achieve promotion which can penalise the clubs who spend money on thier ground first.


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How about the Sky / Prem option

Level 1 ManU, Pool, Chelski, Arse

+ any 2 from Villa, Everton, Spurs, Newcastle (on a rotation basis)

+ 1 from rest of premiership & 5/6 current yo-yos (Albion, Reading Wolves, Birmingham etc etc), having a league of 18 with winner taking all of a seaon with the elite, after lengthy play-offs involving top 16. Compulsory relegation to after that season.

Top 4 can never be relegated , and having a league of 7 playing each other about 5 times (one game to be played in China/ Malaya / India / USA etc) you gets lots of marquee games and a week off in 7 to go & play another lucrative friendly in Milan or Rio.

any team sponsored by weathy enough US/Russian/Arab oligarch can gain temporary promotion in to the elite until he is found to have his wealth based on a failing Ponzi scheme/ has his assets requestrated and is jailed by Putin / his oil wells run dry.


and the rest .... well they can go **** themselves.

I'm flattered that you've placed us in the second section Red Adder. I think a more realistic place for us would be labelled 'chronic underachievers.' Unsure



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KnowYourMarket
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Or just chronic?



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Re: [vienna1964] The New Economy: Should restructuring be restructured ? [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

New ways of thinking was the cry from Angus, so my thoughts are to look at this from the club perspective rather than the leagues.

All any club requires from a structure is:
.- Clarity knows where they stand and all clubs can start preparing for the new season at same time.
.- Stability only change league through promotion or relegation rather than due to events at other clubs or at the whim of a committee.
.- Locality play local rivals rather than trecking across the motorways merely to make up the numbers in another league.

This is not happening at the moment, as the 6 week wait (or longer) until the results of the horse trading between leagues is announced disadvantages those clubs who are located sufficiently close to borders to be unable to start preparations prior to this.
Instead, to allow these basic criteria to be satisfied, a rethink is required on which aspects of a structure should be set in stone and which can be flexible.

.1) Firstly, I would revert back to a (imperfect but practical) regional makeup rather than ('perfect' but impractical) pooling, but with more flexibility within that structure than maybe has been seen in the past, or put another way that flexibility applied in slightly different ways.

.1a) For instance, I would say instead of individual clubs being required to be flexible (aka disadvantaged) by having to switch sideways between leagues (often quite late in the day) just to make up the numbers in a structure with fixed division sizes it is those sizes that should be flexible in order to accommodate the locations of the clubs at that level.
Realistically, what does it really matter if two sister leagues have 23 and 21 teams respectively, surely that is better than one of the 23 (think Redditch) having to wave goodbye to a whole squad based in one area and put together another from another area weeks after other clubs have been signing up the best ones available, just to keep the numbers even?

As long as the numbers stay within a fixed range then there should not be a problem, and that can be achieved by small adjustments in the prom/rel places announced prior to the season starting, so that everyone knows where they stand.

.1b) Similarly, I would also suggest that instead of the makeup of any regions having to be flexible around a nicely symmetrical pyramid, the pyramid should be flexible to have differing numbers of feeders in some areas if that is what fits the concentration of clubs in that area.
Put another way, if it enables the pyramid to maintain its shape rather than suffer the problems brought on by regional drift, then why should it matter if one strand has three, or just one feeder at a certain level instead of the standard two, as long as promotion and relegation can be handled fairly.

.2) Finally, I think we need to get away from convincing ourselves that the current structure means that leagues at each step are directly comparable in standard. They arent and we cannot expect any amount of pooling (apart from a truly random allocation) to achieve this.
The sooner we accept this flaw in the pooling theory, the sooner we can get on with implementing a clear, simple and stable region-based structure in which in truth the variation in standard will not be any worse, yet will avoid handicapping individual clubs by shifting them around willy nilly between leagues in an attempt to maintain the pretence that the perfect system provides even leagues.

It will also allow us to get away from the undignified squabbling over which relegated club deserves to be reprieved when someone goes under up the ladder, in which a comparison of points gained by two teams not good enough to stay out of their respective drop zones across two unequal leagues is deemed more important than the disruption of any number of better performing clubs who are shifted sideways to accommodate the reprieved club into the structure. (ie. if WhippetFC goes bust, then just because WhiteCliffsUtd came 2nd last in their league averaging 0.3ppg and ScouseRovers only averaged 0.29ppg in their league, that should not mean that BlackCountryVilla, AthleticoM40 and Tubezone6FC who finished 7th, 3rd and 12th in their respective leagues should have to shift leagues and lose half of their successful squads in order to accommodate them!!!!)

##

Having looked at club numbers from League2 down to Step5, a regional structure based on the above lines could be implemented relatively easily, with very few clubs moving up or down the ladder beyond standard relegation. It could infact start at a number of places, with the first north/south split either staying where it is, merging levels 1&2, or regionalising the League2/Conf.

In each case the structure would in effect be 1-2-4-7-14 with the 5th tier being based largely around the current Step 5 footprints (with the ESL expanding across the north of London, the SSM moving northwards & the UCL becoming an East Mids league (largely using the CML footprint) the KL/SL/CCL shifting around so that the CCL becomes an Southern League feeder, with the KL& SL sharing the Ryman based clubs).


Northern League and NCE feed NorthernEast
NWC sole feeder to NorthernWest
MFA and EMids (aka UCL) feed Midlands1
Western, Wessex, Hellenic feed SouthernWest
SSM and CCL feed SouthernEast
N London (aka ESL) ECL feed RymanNorth
Kent and Sussex feed RymanSouth

NorthernEast and NorthernWest feed Northern Prem
Midlands1 sole feeder to Midlands Prem
SouthernWest and SouthernEast feed Southern Prem
RymanNorth and RymanSouth feed RymanPrem

Northern and Midlands Prems feed Conf North
Southern and Ryman Prems feed ConfSouth

Typically all leagues would see 2 up 4 down, except the 14 to 7 step which would be 1 up 2 down. The exceptions would be Mid1 to Mid Prem a straight 3 up 3 down, NWC to NorthWestern a straight 2 up 2 down, while the triple feed to SouthernWest would see three relegation spots.
Depending on which level regionalisation starts, then upper levels would see 46 clubs split between pairs of leagues, with pairs at the lower levels splitting 42 clubs and the step5 feeders continuing to function with differing numbers as they do now.
This would allow the higher levels to have one of 23/23, 24/22, 25/21 and perhaps 26/20 splits, with the number of relegation spaces adjusted prior to the season starting (ie 5&3 instead of 4&4) should the balance need correcting. Likewise, lower leagues could have 21/21, 22/20, 23/19 and maybe 24/18.
The advantages of this system over the current one include:
.i) Every club in the pyramid could start preparing for the new season the day after the previous one finishes, with no clubs having their preparations wrecked by being shifted sideways weeks later when the leagues committee sit to accommodate an uneven split of clubs coming down from the level above or because one league wants this team not that team.
.ii) In many cases, any minor imbalance one year will be corrected in subsequent seasons without continued intervention.
.iii) Any variations on the standard prom/rel positions can be announced prior to the start of the season, so everyone knows what they have to do.
.iv) Any late withdrawals can be handled with minimal disruption, with either a simple series of reprieves from within the same strand or the league in question just runs one club light that season, with prom/rel for that strand adjusted to fill the extra place the following season.
.v) Overall, each club will be able to function in their own little world knowing in which league they will be playing from season to season, playing all their local rivals from the same level, and able to better prepare for promotion (should they want to) with a clear idea of the league/area/travel requirements that this will involve rather than having to guess where the black box might place them..

A map added (for an overall picture rather than an exact club by club display) to show the rough regional split I'd advocate, with the coloured dots showing the 14 feeder leagues, the dotted lines showing how these would feed up to 7 divisions and the solid lines how these 7 would become 4 and then 2.
My preference would be much the same as PaulC above, with League2 and Conf merging and then splitting north/south, albeit with the subplot of 17 of the 24 League2 clubs falling into the northern half.


(This post was edited by Jon M on Mar 5, 2009, 12:32 PM)


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Re: [Jon M] The New Economy: Should restructuring be restructured ? [In reply to] Can't Post or

In my opinion I think the leagues should be regionlised from what is now League 1. We should go back to the days when the Top League was the First Division, Second Division and so on, and we the League should be split at Division 3 level as it was up till the 1950's, D3(N), D3(S), In non league Take away the Conference North and South and Regionalise a wider Conference divsion.

I'm going to think from a Northern Perspective now under the Conference. I would further regionalise the Unibond League, going from a North/South Split and create Unibond North East, North West and South and Midlands

To get the teams for a Unibond North East and West Scenario, Invite teams from the Northern League, NCEL and NWCL to join it, and teams that don't want to join absorb them into the current leagues underneath them

I think my idea takes a lot of steps away from the current pyramid, and I believe it would give ambitious teams a better chance of climbing up the pyramid.

If this makes any sense to anybody then great, cause it has got my head battered now Wink

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