Reserve Team Regular
Apr 15, 2014, 7:16 PM
Post #1 of 1
This section has seen many wonderful plans to restructure non-league football over the years, but while certain factors are all trotted out in response as to why this and that will or won't work, I'm not sure how often the focus is fixed purely on the actual financial impact of different structures and movements between levels.
Is there an imbalance between the increases in costs and income between certain levels, and if so why and what can be done to smooth out those barriers to progress?
Factors that leap to mind are:
- Increased travel - not only mileage, but also when to hire coaches rather than drive & I suppose, on rare occasions, an overnight stay
- Player costs - do players generally expect more money when they go up a level - do they normally get it?
- Ground Gradings - lights, turnstiles, seats, are these always needed at the level they are required?
- Attendances - is there much of an increase between each step - does it ever come close to covering the increase in expenditure
But what else?
- Sponsorship/Prize Money - at what level do clubs receive prize money? Does the amount that a side can charge for shirt/club/perimeter sponsorship rise much by level? Does any money from the pro game filter down far enough to make a difference, do any increments cover increased costs?
- Administration - is there a requirement to have more off-field staff by level, do registration fees and the like increase?
For any new structure to be attractive, it will presumably have to address many of these issues to get clubs on board, and are there things that can be done within the current structure to make life more affordable for clubs:
Will cutting out a level in the structure help to redress the balance, or will the step in costs be more prohibitive?
Are there rationalisations that can be made in grading terms, to minimise unnecessary expense
Is there a place for a travel fund within each league, where those clubs with lower annual mileage subsidise the outliers - both within a league or perhaps across steps too?
Where can joint economies be made without impacting on quality?
We are all quick to judge teams that overspend to get up the ladder, but are there ways that the game can help clubs to become more financially sound, by removing some of these financial barriers to progress?
(PS - we all love a map, but I'm looking at what else can be done to help the balance sheets, besides drawing the borders between leagues in different places - there are enough threads that do that)
Over to you gents (and ladies, if there are any)