first_img The Government has insisted the Premier League must provide financial assistance to the EFL, and has pointed out such help was one of the conditions for it giving the green light to Project Restart over the summer, when the 2019-20 season resumed behind closed doors.Julian Knight, the Conservative MP for Solihull who chairs the DCMS committee, says he agrees football must help itself.“It’s a very unedifying sight when you’ve seen other sports coming together in order to find a way through this crisis,” Knight told Sky Sports News.- Advertisement – “Football has just had a transfer window where they’ve spent £1.2bn, where we have 12-15 EFL clubs in the emergency ward, so to speak, that are in a situation where they could go under.“And having dealt with the aftermath of Bury and seen there the way in which that crushed the community, frankly I’m not really prepared to stand by and at least not do anything about that.“They’ve been given a lot of space, a lot of time. I do know they’re talking now and I would like to think that over the last two weeks while we have set up this meeting that may have focused some minds – let’s hope that it has.- Advertisement – “You never know, they could be now on the cusp of putting a deal together and then we can explore that deal in the committee. Hopefully that will be the case.“But the truth of the matter is that football in this country has for a long time… there’s been a feeling that the governance and the way in which many of those at the top of the game conduct their business and their approach to fans and to the grassroots of the game hasn’t been right.“The Covid crisis has just brought that into the sharpest of focus, so we’re looking forward to the session, and I would imagine it would be – to coin a current phrase – fairly good box office!” Fleetwood Town flag
Mick McCarthy and Jobi McAnuff agree with EFL chairman Rick Parry’s letter to the government asking for financial support 3:31 He added: “It does look to be deeply jarring if you have a situation where you’ve got a deal at the top of the game worth £9bn and then you have football clubs going under for the equivalent of a week’s wage to Gareth Bale, and I’m not singling out Gareth Bale in that respect.“At this particular time there seems to be something incredibly poorly placed with the game and I don’t wish to put particular blame on one of these institutions. I’m coming to the session with an open mind, I’m really keen to hear what they have to say.“Hopefully they’ll come with a plan – that would be absolutely fantastic. The only thing is it’s just a shame that it’s taking so long for them to come together. Other sports have put together plans in much quicker time.”EFL clubs have been particularly hard-hit by the loss of matchday revenue due to the pandemic, with Parry warning several clubs could be forced to fold by Christmas without a rescue package.The EFL says it needs a £250m package to continue to operate and rejected an offer of £50m for League One and League Two sides from the Premier League made up of grants and loans, saying it “fell some way short” of what was required.The Premier League says the offer remains on the table and is ready to engage with any club in financial crisis, but adds it has lost £700m during the pandemic. The committee will also take the opportunity to probe the game’s leaders on the Project Big Picture proposals.These first came to light last month, and would have represented the most significant changes to the English football pyramid since the foundation of the Premier League in 1992 if they had been implemented.Parry publicly supported the proposals, which were developed by Liverpool and Manchester United. Measures such as an immediate £250m rescue package for EFL clubs and a 25-per-cent share in future Premier League media revenues were welcomed by many, but the plans also sought to concentrate power in the hands of the top-flight’s big six clubs.Project Big Picture was described by the Football Supporters’ Association as “a sugar-coated cyanide pill” while the Secretary of State for DCMS, Oliver Dowden, derided it as a “distraction at best” and urged Parry in a committee hearing to ignore this “latest wheeze” and focus on bailout talks with the Premier League.Clarke’s presence before the committee comes amid questions over his role in Project Big Picture.He told the FA Council last month he had been involved in early discussions but walked away in the spring when “the principal aim became the concentration of power and wealth in the hands of a few clubs, with a breakaway league mooted as a threat”.A number of reports have since suggested Clarke was much more centrally involved.Knight said: “I’d like to find out the genesis of it, how it came about, who supports it, who doesn’t support it, why do they support it, why don’t they support it. What was the role of the three bodies that are in front of us, and were there any merits to it?“I understand the way it looked like a power grab, but small elements such as the greater distribution of TV revenues down the game, I thought that was a good idea.” Fleetwood Town chief executive Steve Curwood says only the government can save some EFL clubs from going bust Leaders of English football will face MPs on Tuesday over the failure to agree a coronavirus rescue package for the English Football League (EFL), with Project Big Picture also under scrutiny.Premier League chief executive Richard Masters, EFL chairman Rick Parry and Football Association (FA) boss Greg Clarke have all been called before the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) committee, with proceedings set to take place from 9:30am.- Advertisement – 1:23 – Advertisement –last_img read more

first_imgOllie Jung | Daily TrojanAs the cliché goes, hope springs eternal on Opening Day, when every team believes — or at least hopes — that this is its year. But in Los Angeles, the start of the new baseball season brings as much desperation as optimism.Star pitcher  Clayton Kershaw and company came within one win of a World Series title last fall. But they fell short in Game 7, continuing the franchise’s championship drought that has now spanned a full three decades.Thirty seasons doesn’t match the futility of the Cleveland Indians’ 69-year streak — still, L.A. won its last ring in 1988: just two years after the New York Mets’ most recent title. Only sustained competitiveness has spared the Dodgers from the ridicule the Mets receive almost every season, but when push comes to shove, it has been an almost equally long time since the Commissioner’s Trophy was in Chavez Ravine and Queens.Fortunately for L.A. fans, it really does feel like the end of the drought is imminent: Dave Roberts’ squad enters 2018 as the defending National League champion coming off a 104-win campaign. The Dodgers boast a roster full of players entering or in the thick of their prime. Reigning Rookie of the Year first baseman Cody Bellinger is one of many studs in a stacked lineup, while perennial Cy Young/MVP contender Kershaw headlines an equally strong rotation. Oh, and Kenley Jansen — likely the best closer in the league — anchors the bullpen.On the other hand, it’s easy to forget in retrospect how unlikely last year’s run to the Fall Classic really was. OK, I guess you can’t call it “unlikely” when the franchise with the highest payroll in baseball (by $30 million) wins a pennant. But I’m sure plenty remember the state of the Dodgers the day Bellinger made his big-league debut. About a month into the season, L.A. was floundering below .500 with an impotent offense — then the rookie sensation kick-started his team to the best record in the majors.Now the Dodgers need Bellinger to avoid a sophomore slump and continue blossoming into one of the game’s top power hitters. Likewise, they will hope Chris Taylor isn’t a flash in the pan. Roberts got 22 home runs and 17 stolen bases from the utilityman, who had batted .230 in 120 career games across three seasons before hitting .288 in 140 contests last year. Matt Kemp is the team’s opening-day left fielder, and it remains to be seen how the 33-year-old will perform in his second go-around with L.A. after being unceremoniously dealt to San Diego in a salary dump in 2014.There are question marks in the pitching staff, too, mostly due to personnel turnover. Yu Darvish’s rough World Series was a bitter final memory, but he was a valuable asset down the stretch in 2017 and will be missed after penning a deal with the Chicago Cubs. The bridge to Jansen got weaker over the offseason as well: Brandon Morrow also jumped ship to the Cubs in pursuit of a closing gig, and Tony Watson signed with the archrival Giants. The Dodgers acquired southpaw Scott Alexander from Kansas City to help fill the void, but they will largely lean on the likes of Josh Fields and Tony Cingrani to step into bigger roles this season.None of these problems sre insurmountable. And no team in the league is without weakness and uncertainty. L.A.’s depth was one of its greatest strengths in 2017, and that will undoubtedly roll over to pay dividends in 2018. Another deep postseason run seems a near certainty, but in baseball, you can never be sure of anything.That makes capitalizing on the Dodgers’ current rise all the more important. Though it appears as if Bellinger and shortstop Corey Seager will make up the franchise’s core for many years to come, it’s hard to imagine a title run becoming more likely once Kershaw hangs up his spikes. Going into his age-30 season, the ace isn’t anywhere near retirement, but he is entering the twilight of his prime. Right now, Kershaw can single-handedly compensate for a host of issues in the offense, starting rotation and bullpen, and most importantly, it seems like he has exorcised his postseason demons, making him even more invisible than he already was.Last October proved that L.A.’s championship window is open wider than it has been in decades. Though they couldn’t quite win it all then, the Dodgers can’t pity themselves for the blown leads in Game 2 and Game 5. The only way to erase those memories is to return to the Fall Classic and go one better. But a sense of urgency is imperative: The window can shut as abruptly as it flies open — just ask the Mets. Ollie Jung is a senior majoring in print and digital journalism. His column, “Jung Money,” runs Fridays.last_img read more

first_imgWhite initially said the first event on Fight Island would be held July 25, before correcting himself.”I made a mistake earlier when I told you about Fight Island. The first fight on Fight Island is probably around June 27, not July,” he said.The UFC has continued despite COVID-19, holding five events without fans since March. UFC president Dana White said the first event on what he calls Fight Island will be held June 27.White has been working to set up a location to host international fights amid travel restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic.  MORE: Jon Jones confiscates spray cans from protestersWhite spoke of how much work had gone into the idea, which he hopes will help mixed martial arts grow further.”Let me tell you about Fight Island. Fight Island is so f—ing expensive and so f—ing crazy and almost impossible to pull off,” he told Eddie Hearn and Tony Bellew on the “Talk The Talk” series on YouTube.”You are talking about planes flying people in and the restrictions and you have to quarantine people. It’s f—ing insane to even be trying to do this but I promise you we will do it and we will pull it off.”I believe (that) in doing this it’s going to help grow the sport immensely and financially. In many different ways it is going to help build the sport. I know we can do it. Let me tell you how hard it is and how crazy the whole thing has been.The  will take notice.We’re three days from #UFC250 – LIVE on ESPN+ PPV pic.twitter.com/srVwAIWpGw— UFC (@ufc) June 3, 2020″While people have been laying in their f—ing pools and enjoying the pandemic, I’ve been over here smoking my executive staff, burning these guys out. It’s been crazy.”last_img read more