Leeds chief claims wealth redistribution rewards incompetence


London (AFP) – Leeds chief executive Angus Kinnear said proposals for greater wealth distribution in English football would only reward “incompetence” as he compared a transfer levy on Premier League clubs to Maoism and the Great Chinese Famine.

The transfer levy and an independent regulator were just two of 47 recommendations made by a fan-led review of football governance which was published last week.

Kinnear said he supported many of the recommendations, but that those two “are as flawed as they are radical”.

Writing in his programme notes ahead of Tuesday’s Premier League clash with Crystal Palace, Kinnear said: “Enforcing upon football a philosophy akin to Maoist collective agriculturalism (which students of ‘The Great Leap Forward’ will know culminated in the greatest famine in history) will not make the English game fairer, it will kill the competition which is its very lifeblood.”

Misguided economic policies during the Great Leap Forward contributed to mass famine which caused tens of millions of deaths in China.

Leeds returned to the top-flight in 2020 after a 16-year absence that began with a financial meltdown in 2004.

Kinnear said any extra funds that flowed down the pyramid from the Premier League would simply go back out in player wages and transfer fees.

“Redistribution of wealth will simply favour the lowest common denominator. Clubs who excel in recruitment, player development or commercial enterprise will be punished, while less capable ownership will be rewarded for incompetence,” he added.

Premier League chief executive Richard Masters said last week the organisation is open to an independent regulator, but labelled some recommendations “too radical”.

Masters dismissed the English Football League’s request to be given 25 percent of all pooled broadcast revenue.

“That would be a disaster. Value has to be retained where it is generated otherwise that value can’t be generated,” he said.

“Premier League clubs have to be able to attract the best players, talent and managers and create that incredible competitiveness.”

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