Swans Defend Stance

Wednesday, 13 June 2001, 0:00
1 min read

while the Conference clubs wanted two sides promoted to the Third and two relegated from it.

Conference officials were angry that the Football League clubs rejected their proposal and will meet later this week to discuss further action.

But Swansea’s managing director, Mike Lewis, said,

‘People who don’t know about the complexities of this issue think the Division Three clubs are just looking after themselves, but that’s not true. ‘We agree with the principle of two-up-two-down – the Conference has a valid point there – but what the Conference couldn’t do is convince the Third Division chairmen on the amount of compensation they received if their clubs were relegated.’

At the moment the clubs that drop into the Conference receive a parachute payment of £125,000. The Conference has offered to double that amount with the two relegated clubs receiving £250,000 but it could only guarantee that amount for two years. It would then go back to £125,000

‘We felt that after two years there wasn’t enough security for clubs going into the Conference,’ added Lewis.

‘If the Conference could have guaranteed £250,000 for the next four years that might have made a difference. ‘There is a fear that after two years there won’t be enough there. The current payment of £125,000 isn’t really enough.

‘At the moment Division Three clubs receive a payment of £370,000, so £125,000 wouldn’t last long when you think clubs will have a lot of players on long contracts.’ Lewis said there was also the problem of Conference grounds not being up to league standard.

‘The grounds of several Conference clubs do not satisfy league criteria,’ he said. ‘There is a view that until all Conference grounds are up to standard the number of promoted clubs should stay as it is. But at Swansea we didn’t take that view. We have a lot of sympathy for the Conference clubs and the idea of two-up-two-down is a fair and equitable one.

‘We are quite prepared to change but the issue of the parachute payments must be sorted out first. ‘My own personal view is that the pyramid system should be consistent right the way through the leagues.’

Images courtesy of Getty Images, Athena Picture Agency and Swansea City Football Club.
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