Income tax rate suit you? VAT at 20 per cent, you OK with that? Bailing out the banks? Student loans, immigration, overseas aid, NHS dentists – no problems there?

The FA has been given until February 29 to overhaul its board and bring in a new licensing system for clubs.

The game’s governance, Robertson said,

has failed to keep up with the modern game. If football proves unable to sort this out itself, then the government may have to legislate.

We need to be clear what the charge is. That goes back to a Select Committee which looked at the finances of the professional game and didn’t like what it saw.

According to the respected Deloitte report for the 2009-10 season, the 92 league clubs lost £600m in total. Their collective debt as of June 2011 stood at £3.5bn or, to put it brutally, £3,500,000,000. In simple terms, from season 2013-14 expenditure must not exceed revenue. Problem solved? Let’s hope so.

Clubs who can afford the most expensive lawyers and the most creative accountants. Check the debit column in next year’s figures for expenditure on midnight oil.
Prudent premiership football clubs such as Stoke City will have less to worry about than some, as their accountants in Stoke will testify.

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