Administrator Stan 17,516 Posted October 24, 2017 Administrator Share Posted October 24, 2017 https://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2017/10/24/qpr-ordered-pay-world-record-40million-ffp-fine-losing-three/ Quote Queens Park Rangers have been ordered to pay a world-record £40million fine after losing a three-year battle against being found guilty of breaching Financial Fair Play rules during their most recent promotion-winning campaign. The Championship club’s claim that the English Football League’s FFP regulations were “unlawful” and that the fine levied on them was “disproportionate” was dismissed by an arbitration panel, with both parties informed of the decision last week. QPR confirmed on Tuesday they would be appealing a verdict that also spelt bad news for Leicester City and Bournemouth, who the EFL is pursuing, too, for effectively cheating their way to promotion in 2013-14 and 2014-15, respectively. Acknowledging it had taken “a long time” for the matter to be resolved, EFL chief executive Shaun Harvey said: “This decision vindicates the approach of the EFL board in defending this challenge. The board will continue to enforce our rules on clubs to protect the interests of those that do comply.” QPR chief executive Lee Hoos added: “We are understandably disappointed with the decision and will be appealing.” Rangers’ £40m fine is thought to be the largest ever issued in football and is potentially the biggest in sport after the £50m McLaren were docked over Formula One’s ‘Spygate’ scandal. It is also more than double the amount Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain ended up paying for breaching Uefa’s FFP regulations three years ago. The Premier League and the then Football League both followed European football’s governing body in introducing cost-control measures in a bid to prevent clubs going bust. Rules came into force in the lower leagues in 2012 which permitted Championship teams to make annual losses of £8m, with any side exceeding this placed under a transfer embargo or - if promoted to the Premier League - issued with a fine. Fines were measured on a sliding scale for losses between £8m and £18m, with anything in excess of that calculated on a strict pound for pound basis. QPR were widely expected to report massive losses in 2013-14 following their relegation from the Premier League on the back of a £41.1m spending spree on the likes of Andrew Johnson, Julio Cesar, Samba Diakite, Robert Green, Stephane Mbia, Park Ji-Sung, Esteban Granero, Junior Hoilett, Jose Bosingwa, Ryan Nelsen, Christopher Samba, Loic Remy, Yun Suk-Young, Jermaine Jenas and Tal Ben Haim. But, after winning that season’s Championship play-off final, they reported a loss of just £9.8m after then owner Tony Fernandes, now the club’s co-chairman, and other shareholders wrote off £60m in loans as an “exceptional item”. The Football League refused to do the same when it came to assessing their compliance with FFP regulations, imposing a £40m fine. With Fernandes having already stated QPR would fight any such punishment and Harvey warning failure to pay could see the club thrown out of the professional game, a three-year legal battle ensued which both sides ultimaltely agreed to be settled by arbitration. To complicate matters, the league relaxed its FFP rules in November of that year and harmonised them with those of the Premier League amid criticisms they were too draconian. Since then, Championship clubs have been permitted to lose £39m over a three-year period - even more if they have spent one or two of those years in the Premier League. QPR tried to exploit that decision to argue the original regulations had not been fit for purpose but to no avail. It was unclear last night whether the club would have to record any fine in their latest annual accounts - putting them in danger of failing FFP again this season - or would be allowed to exclude it. The statement from Harvey did not bode well on that front, with the EFL chief saying: “The board understand the challenges that this decision could create for our valued member club and will work with them, as and when the matter formally concludes.” Pending the outcome of any QPR appeal, the EFL is now free to enforce multi-million-pound fines on both Leicester and Bournemouth. Leicester won the Championship in 2014, the launchpad for their fairy tale 2016 Premier League triumph. They went up on the back of losses of £20.8m but proclaimed their accounts were in compliance with FFP rules. Bournemouth, fined £7.6m last year after posting losses of £38.3m during their promotion-winning season, were relying on QPR winning their case to overturn that punishment. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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