Club Statement | Football Governance Bill

Oxford United welcomes the introduction of the historic Football Governance Bill to Parliament.

Tim Williams, Oxford United’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “The introduction of the Football Governance Bill to Parliament marks a significant milestone for football in England. On behalf of the shareholders, Directors, players, staff, our supporters and the wider Oxfordshire community, I welcome this development with open arms. This Bill is not just important, it’s vital for the sustainability of clubs up and down the country.

“Protecting our national game from the financial issues that have plagued so many clubs is of paramount importance. This Bill will provide the necessary checks and balances to protect the financial viability of the football pyramid, ensuring that every club, from the grassroots to the elite, can thrive.

“The proposed new stadium for Oxford United is testament to this club’s commitment to long-term sustainability. It will not only provide a state-of-the-art landmark the whole of Oxfordshire can be proud of but also enhance the matchday experience for our fans, who are the lifeblood of this club. The importance of fans in football cannot be overstated. As shown by the recent launch of our new Fan Engagement Plan, we share the view that supporters should be instrumental in decision-making.

“I’d also like to place on record my sincere thanks to Anneliese Dodds, MP for Oxford East, Robert Courts, MP for Witney, and David Johnston, MP for Wantage, for their continued support.

“The Football Governance Bill has the ability to safeguard the future of clubs like Oxford United and ensure that football remains the beautiful game that we all care so deeply about.”

EFL Chair Rick Parry said: “The EFL welcomes today’s arrival of the Football Governance Bill to Parliament in what we hope will be an important milestone to help us secure the long-term financial sustainability of England’s football pyramid.

“If delivered on the right terms, this landmark legislation can help fix the game’s broken financial model by offering the independent input ultimately needed to help ensure that all Clubs can survive and thrive in a fair and competitive environment.

“The establishment of the Independent Football Regulator will be at the heart of this reform, and we are encouraged that the Regulator will be given backstop powers to deliver financial redistributions should the game be unable to agree a deal itself.

“In recent years, we have been working with Government and across Parliament on cross-party basis. It is clear there is an appreciation of just how important professional Clubs are to their communities and why they must be protected.

“We are pleased that the Government has stated its commitment to the State of the Game Review which will provide the basis for the Independent Regulator’s work in making the game financially sustainable.

“The League looks forward to contributing to that Review while simultaneously working with EFL Clubs, Parliamentarians, and officials to ensure that the Football Governance Bill is fit for purpose and can deliver the best regulatory regime to safeguard our game for generations.

“Finally, on behalf of the EFL I would like to thank MPs, Peers, fans and all those who have helped get the Bill to Parliament and we will continue to work collaboratively in the months ahead.”

The full Government press release issued from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport regarding the Football Governance Bill can be read HERE.

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