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Switzerlineker

Premier League 2017/18

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Switzerlineker    33,292
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Richard Scudamore is stepping down as the Premier League’s executive chairman after 20 years in charge of the organisation, with his resignation being compared to that of Sir Alex Ferguson leaving Manchester United.

Scudamore’s departure remained a closely guarded secret until he made the announcement at a Premier League annual general meeting in a London hotel. It came as a surprise to executives of the 20 clubs in the room.

A qualified lawyer and former sales director, he became chief executive of football’s top flight in 1999 and executive chairman in 2014. The search for his replacement has already begun.

Scudamore, 58, divided opinion during two decades, with a tough negotiating style which some found abrasive, but his influence on the burgeoning wealth of the top tier is undisputed. Players’ wages rocketed from an average £400,000 per year to £2.6m – the latter figure being roughly equivalent to what Scudamore earns in the executive role he will leave before the end of the year.

Scudamore has overseen an enormous rise in Premier League revenue. When he took over the division earned £25m every 12 months. That same figure now stands at £1.1bn per year and is rising. On the day his resignation was made public it was revealed that the online streaming service Amazon had won the rights to show 20 Premier League matches a season for three years from 2019, indicating more growth in diverse areas.

“It’s an absolute privilege to have been allowed to enjoy this role for so long,” Scudamore said. “It is too much fun to be called a job. Football is an intoxicating environment and therefore difficult to give up being so involved, but my passion for what football means to so many and the positive impact it can make will never diminish.”

Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the Professional Footballers’ Association, spoke with Scudamore on Wednesday but had no idea of his intention to walk away from the job. It is understood only the board and the head of the League’s audit and remuneration committee, Bruce Buck, were aware of his plan to resign and that he waited until the any other business part of the meeting to announce it.

Taylor compared Scudamore’s departure to that of other towering figures in the Premier League. “To some extent it’s like a football club,” he said. “Wenger leaving Arsenal and Sir Alex leaving Man United left big shoes to fill and so does Richard Scudamore. It’s certainly a big challenge.”

Buck, also the Chelsea chairman, said work had begun on replacing Scudamore. “We expect to make an appropriate appointment in good time so there can be a seamless transition,” he said. “I speak for all the clubs when I say we are very sorry that Richard will be leaving, but we could not have asked for anything more from him. For 20 years he has led the Premier League with distinction.”

Scudamore’s period in office was not without controversy. He was lucky to keep his job when damning emails emerged between himself and a lawyer. A tribunal was told that the pair used “sexually explicit” and “sexist” terms in 14 that were sent over 18 months. But many within the game stuck by him.

Martin Glenn discounted himself from the list of replacements, insisting he would not be interested. The FA chief executive said: “From a personal point of view, it’s a shame. He’s tough guy to deal with, but he really has the interests of English football in his heart. He has been a consistent supporter of the Football Foundation from the word go, at a time when the FA has blown hot and cold about it. He has been there, every year, pushing the need for the foundation and the need for community football facilities.”

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PanamAdam    6,522

Can you all just hurry up and make your big European Super League, piss off from the domestic game and leave us to it? Put the so-called "big 6" in some league with Real, Barca, Juve, Bayern and PSG and be done with it.

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Switzerlineker    33,292
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The Labour party has decided to give its official backing to the introduction of safe standing at Premier League and Championship stadiums.

The party believes decisions around safe standing should be devolved to clubs, supporters and safety authorities, a stance that the shadow sports minister, Rosena Allin-Khan, will announce officially on Friday and which will act as a further boost to campaigners and backers of safe standing. They received an initial boost this week when it was revealed that the government is to commission a review of the policy that demands all-seat stadiums in England’s top two divisions.

The sports minister, Tracey Crouch, had previously been unmoved by calls to overturn the ban on standing, which was introduced following the 1989 Hillsborough disaster and has been in place for more than 20 years. But following a swell of support for a change, alongside improvements in stadium design, it is understood Crouch has had a change of heart and will address a Westminster debate on the issue this month.

“We want to give the power to fans, clubs and local safety authorities, to allow for a small area inside a stadium to be designated for safe standing,” Allin-Khan will say at the official announcement, which is to take place at Loftus Road, the home of Queens Park Rangers. “Clubs, fans and local authorities know their stadium far better than anybody in Whitehall – the decision should rest with them.”

A survey conducted by the Football League last month indicated 94% of fans want safe standing to be introduced, and that followed a petition, signed by more than 100,000 people, calling for the Premier League and Championship clubs to allow safe standing, which means the issue will be discussed by Parliament.

The issue remains a sensitive one given many families of those who died at Hillsborough remain opposed to stadiums being anything but all-seat. Campaigners for safe standing point out that standing itself was not a cause of the 1989 disaster as well as referring to the success of “rail seating” across Germany and at Celtic Park, by which rows of rails with flip-down seats are closely spaced to guard against overcrowding and crushing.

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Nerf    5,146
40 minutes ago, Lineker said:
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The Labour party has decided to give its official backing to the introduction of safe standing at Premier League and Championship stadiums.

The party believes decisions around safe standing should be devolved to clubs, supporters and safety authorities, a stance that the shadow sports minister, Rosena Allin-Khan, will announce officially on Friday and which will act as a further boost to campaigners and backers of safe standing. They received an initial boost this week when it was revealed that the government is to commission a review of the policy that demands all-seat stadiums in England’s top two divisions.

The sports minister, Tracey Crouch, had previously been unmoved by calls to overturn the ban on standing, which was introduced following the 1989 Hillsborough disaster and has been in place for more than 20 years. But following a swell of support for a change, alongside improvements in stadium design, it is understood Crouch has had a change of heart and will address a Westminster debate on the issue this month.

“We want to give the power to fans, clubs and local safety authorities, to allow for a small area inside a stadium to be designated for safe standing,” Allin-Khan will say at the official announcement, which is to take place at Loftus Road, the home of Queens Park Rangers. “Clubs, fans and local authorities know their stadium far better than anybody in Whitehall – the decision should rest with them.”

A survey conducted by the Football League last month indicated 94% of fans want safe standing to be introduced, and that followed a petition, signed by more than 100,000 people, calling for the Premier League and Championship clubs to allow safe standing, which means the issue will be discussed by Parliament.

The issue remains a sensitive one given many families of those who died at Hillsborough remain opposed to stadiums being anything but all-seat. Campaigners for safe standing point out that standing itself was not a cause of the 1989 disaster as well as referring to the success of “rail seating” across Germany and at Celtic Park, by which rows of rails with flip-down seats are closely spaced to guard against overcrowding and crushing.

I really fucking wish the opportunistic Tory press would stop using Hillsborough families to try and counter the safe standing debate. This is an outright fabrication. In actuality, many of the Hillsborough families attended Celtic Park with Spirit of Shankly and the vast majority have since given their support for rail seating after experiencing it.

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Switzerlineker    33,292

Kenny Dalglish is to receive a knighthood in the Queen's Birthday Honours.

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PolaMDK    22,214

And Jermaine DefOBE

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