Backers of a significant shake-up that is dividing English football have been forced to defend the proposals amid fierce criticism from the UK government, the Premier League and the Football Association.
The plan, devised by Rick Parry, the chairman of the English Football League, which runs the three divisions below the top flight, and Liverpool and Manchester United, the Premier League’s two most successful clubs, would hand a £250m bailout to the EFL as well a 25 per cent share of future media revenue.
For Mr Parry, it is a chance to reset English football and address the unsustainable surge in costs to keep up as the gulf widens between the Premier League and the EFL. It also marks a power grab by the top clubs, as it would concentrate power in the hands of the Big Six, which includes Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur.
The plan will