International Soccer

Aston Villa owner considering legal action against Premier League financial rules

Aston Villa owner Nassef Sawiris has admitted he is taking advice over legal action against the Premier League over the organisation’s Profit and Sustainability Rules (PSR).

Villa recently reported an annual loss of £119.6m after tax, sparking claims they need to cash in on some players to avoid falling foul of PSR rules which limit teams to a total of £105m losses over any three-year period.

The Villans, who battled their way to fourth in the Premier League standings last season, recently proposed a raising of the allowed losses up to £135m but were knocked back.

Speaking to the Financial Times, Sawiris argued PSR has only made it harder for teams like Villa to compete with the richest sides in the Premier League.

“Some of the rules have actually resulted in cementing the status quo more than creating upward mobility and fluidity in the sport,” he claimed. “The rules do not make sense and are not good for football.”

He added: “Managing a sports team has become more like being a treasurer or a bean counter rather than looking at what your team needs. It’s more about creating paper profits, not real profits. It becomes a financial game, not a sporting game.”

Ollie Watkins, Matty Cash

Villa qualified for the Champions League this season / Marc Atkins/GettyImages

While the PSR threshold has not changed, there will be a trial of a new financial system which, should all go to plan, could replace the current regulations for the 2025/26 season.

The new process will see clubs given a spending cap which is tied to the bottom side’s TV and broadcasting income.

“Clubs agreed to trial an alternative league-wide financial system next season on a non-binding basis,” a Premier League statement read. “The existing PSR will remain in place, but clubs will trial squad cost rules (SCR) and top to bottom anchoring rules (TBA) in shadow.

“This will enable the league and clubs to fully evaluate the system, including the operation of UEFA’s equivalent new financial regulations, and to complete its consultation with all relevant stakeholders.”


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