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Archived News from August 2009

8th August 2009 0:05

Andy Perry interview on mansfieldtown.net, reflecting on the issue -->


Stags' shortfall not as bad as first feared
CHAD.co.uk, 04 August 2009, By John Lomas

ANDY Perrys' worries over a financial shortfall at Field Mill were partially eased today when a check on the budgets showed only £48,000 of the expected £80,000 income from Conference central funding had been programed into the club's current projections.


This followed an announcement at yesterday's Conference pre-season meeting when clubs were told that, following the collapse of Setanta Sports, there was currently only about £18,000 per club in the 'central pot' though this could still rise if new deals are concluded.

Perry initially believed Stags had fully budgeted on the whole £80,000 of last season but checks on the figures today eased those worries a little.

"I do apologise to the fans for a kneejerk reaction as I was on my way back and unable to speak to anyone about it," he said. "But there will still be a £30,000 shortfall as things stand."

Perry had told Chad he was 'gob-smacked' to find out that Setanta were responsible for such a large chunk of the central funding.

But a Conference spokesman said all commercial monies were put in that pot, that everyone knew about Setanta's demise and felt Mansfield were the only club surprised by the situation.

However, Perry hit back: "I was not the only one shocked by this news. There were other chairman there and people I have spoken to since on the phone who agree with me.

"I defy anyone to find a definitive breakdown of where central funding actually comes from. Being the Blue Square league you'd expect most of it to come from Blue Square - no one had ever said that three-quarters of it came from Setanta before.

"The league ask for transparency from the clubs but never seems to make it simple and easy for us."


BSP 'astounded' over Perry comments
CHAD.co.uk, 04 August 2009, By John Lomas

THE BSP today expressed their shock at Andy Perry's comments after the Stags chairman claimed the club had seen their expected income from the league for the new season unexpectedly slashed by £62,000.


Mr Perry attended a meeting yesterday where clubs were told there was nearer £18,000 currently in the 'central funding pot' rather than the average £80,000 clubs received last year.

Although Stags knew they would not be getting any TV money from collapsed broadcasters Setanta this year, Mr Perry said he had believed the central funding came from league sponsors Blue Square and said the club now faced an unexpected £62,000 shortfall.

However, the Conference press and media spokesman today told Chad: "We are absolutely astounded by Mr Perry's comments.

"This was not a bombshell to anyone. All clubs were told within 24 hours of Setanta going out of business.

"All central funding here is made up of all money accrued from all the commercial deals we do, of which Setanta was one.

"All that money does not come in at once so thoughout the season we make regular payments to member clubs.

"Last season most clubs got an average £80,000 from that pot though some got more television matches than others and made as much as £150,000."

He added: "At the meeting someone asked us what was in the pot for clubs as it stands right now. That is difficult to answer as some of the deals that are on the table have not been concluded and we still have to sort out broadcasting rights.

"But we were pressed for a ballpark figure and, being realistic, we said that right now it would amount to around £18,000 per club.

"I think that is where Mr Perry has misunderstood the situation and has since been perpetuating this misinformation. He has made an error if he didn't realise the Setanta money was part of the central funding pot.

"I think Mansfield are the only club to have made this assumption. Central money varies from season to season."


Andy Perry on BBC Non-League Show, here.
03 August2009

Or listen to the whole show here (follow link to BBC Non-League Show)


BSP budget shocker for Stags
CHAD.co.uk 03 August 2009, By John Lomas
MANSFIELD Town were dealt a major financial blow this morning, just five days from the start of the new season, when they had their funding slashed by the Blue Square Premier League.

Stags now face a £62,000 budget shortfall after last season's £80,000 central funding was reduced to £18,000 without warning at the league's annual pre-season managment meeting, leaving all club representatives in the room open-mouthed.

"As it is called the Blue Square Premier we all thought they were the sponsors and the collapse of Setanta Sports would not affect central funding," said Stags chairman Andy Perry.

Full CHAD story ---> http://www.chad.co.uk/stags/BSP-budget-shocket-for-Stags.5518484.jp

"But we found out today that Setanta put a large chunk of money into the pot and that has now gone on top of the TV money.

"We didn't budget for the TV money but we did budget for this and everyone in the room was gob-smacked.

"Now we need the town more than ever to back us and help us overcome this shortfall. Top and bottom is we have go to increase our commercial activity in a tight financial climate.

"We have a board meeting on Wednesday and we will now have to throw this into the hat and see how we can account for this shortfall.

"Our players have to be aware we have to gain the interest of the town."
Perry also discovered a further handicap to Mansfield's hopes with news of a large increase in parachute money paid to newly relegated clubs from the Football League.

"We were given £160,000 last season but Chester have told us they have been given £225,000 this year," said Perry.

"The League are obviously attracting good sponsorship packages and more and more it will mean sides relegated from the League have a better chance of bouncing straight back."

The BSP confirmed today that wage capping based on percentage of turnover will be introduced next season.

They also said they were 'very confident' of news of a new TV rights deal by Friday though it would be nowhere near as financially lucrative as the Setanta deal.

No mention was made of the former Setanta Shield competition for the new season.


Meanwhile Perry told the Evening Post:
"We need people to get behind us now more than ever and I would love to get 4,000 against Crawley – that would show our intent," said Perry.
"When something like this is dropped on you, then it is obviously a worry for everyone.
"You go back and look at everything again – you have to. We have a board meeting tomorrow (Wednesday) and it will be top of our agenda.
"This, along with Canterbury (kit suppliers) going into administration and Setanta going through, is not our fault.
"But we are not looking to apportion blame, we are just looking at where we go from here.
"It is too early to say exactly what the impact is and if we would have to shed any players.
"But it is certainly another difficulty for us on the eve of a new season."

Full story here ---> http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/football/Stags-fans-backing-face-new-cash-blow/article-1219953-detail/article.html


York face big financial shortfall
5 August 2009

York City is set to lose £62,000 of funding after the Football Conference cut its central payments to clubs from £80,000 to £18,000.

Part of the reduction is caused by the lack of a television deal after the broadcaster Setanta collapsed.

York director of communication Sophie Hicks told BBC Radio York: "We received confirmation on Monday that the central funding is going to reduce.

"It's a big blow but it's difficult for every club in our league."

Hicks said they hope a new deal will still be found.

"The impact is clearly from Setanta but we didn't really envisage that the shortfall would be this large.

"We also thought the Conference would have sorted out a new television deal by now.

"They are making noises that a new deal will be announced by Friday but I think it's going to be substantially less than last year so it's difficult.

"But the more people we can get to come through the turnstiles the more businesses that support us in any way, that's really going to benefit us this season."

Hicks also defended the transfer fee of £55,000 paid for striker Michael Gash in the light of the funding cut.

"Money that was spent on Michael Gash came from the transfer fee that we received from Scunthorpe for Adam Boyes so that was fortuitous for us.

"But this is a massive amount of money. Our youth scheme is in jeopardy and the parents of our youth trainees are fundraising at the moment.

"They're doing really well and we hope people in the community will also support them. But this is just another blow and it makes life difficult for us really."



Conference fears Setanta collapse
9 June 2009
Football Conference director Phil Ledger is concerned clubs could be dealt a serious financial blow if Setanta goes into administration.

The Conference leagues are two years into a five-year deal worth £2.5m with the troubled broadcaster.

Blue Square Premier sides receive a minimum of £70,000 a year and clubs in the North and South take £15,000 each.

Ledger told BBC Sussex and BBC Surrey: "I think it will affect people a hell of a lot. £70,000 is a lot of money."

The Woking club secretary added: "It doesn't come through the gate for a lot of clubs, and the money can be a lifeline."

Rushden and Diamonds manager Justin Edinburgh says his budget at Nene Park is likely to be affected if the sports broadcaster goes out of business.

"It's going to affect the whole league and maybe the bigger clubs as much as the lesser ones." Edinburgh told BBC Radio Northampton.

"Until we get the full details we don't know just how much it will affect us."

Setanta is reported to be desperate for backers to step in and provide it with funds to bridge the £30m debt it owes to the English Premier League.

The broadcaster has already failed to pay £3m that it owes to the Scottish Premier League and is believed to be losing £100m a year according to analysts.

It also has the television rights to golf, cricket and rugby union competitions and while a rival broadcaster could buy up the rights to Setanta's Premier League portfolio, the future of broadcasting, and funding for, its non-league games is unclear.

It is a situation that Ledger finds uncomfortable.

"Clubs might have had advice not to budget for that money, but I'm sure some clubs think well there is £70,000 guaranteed.

"Also on top of this people do get £8,000 for a home game and £3,000 for an away game, and it's another couple of players for your squad".

Setanta: club statement
Wednesday, 24 June 2009

At 6 pm yesterday all UK Setanta channels ceased broadcasting following the parent company's entry into administration. While the news had been widely expected it still comes as a major blow to sport and Conference football in particular.

From an Ebbsfleet perspective we, along with the 23 other Blue Square Premier clubs, asked at the Football Conference Annual General Meeting two weekends ago what if any contingencies they had investigated should Setanta fold - and while they had made some tentative enquiries there was nothing positive to report.

Unless a replacement TV company picks up the Setanta contract all Conference Blue Square Premier clubs will be financially effected, in our case a loss of central funding of around £60,000 this season. Given the size of the club's budget this season, the loss of revenue will have a major impact in all areas of funding including the playing budget which is already at an all-time low.

ESPN, who ironically were owned by Setanta at one time but sold to Disney to help fund their Premier and FA contracts, are unlikely to pick up the Conference coverage and BSkyB will have no capacity to broadcast.

One encouraging piece of news is that I did speak to an FA representative about the FA Cup and FA Trophy prize funds which could be affected by the loss of Setanta but he was of the opinion that there would not be any significant impact in that area and they are hopeful of finding a television replacement for their TV rights packages.

The loss of television coverage will, in my opinion, also have an impact on our sponsorships income in terms of programme advertising, ground boards and match days. While we can hopefully minimise this with a lot of hard work and in some areas reduce prices to attract new sponsors and keep existing ones, the overall impact could be greater than the initial sum of £60,000.

In overall terms it means that the club will need more than ever fans and MyFC members to maximise fundraising through every possible source to balance the books this season.

John Moules
Acting CEO, Ebbsfleet United

The Conference Board has also released a statement as follows:

"The Board and staff of the Football Conference are deeply saddened by the news that Setanta have gone into administration. Although the financial implications of this action will have an enormous impact on the competition, our clubs, partners and supporters, we must not forget the contribution made by them to us over the last two years. Setanta pioneered many new initiatives during their association, some of which are now copied by other broadcasters.

The Conference Board did everything in its power to support Setanta in its time of financial crisis and we wish the very best to all those we have met along the way, who have become friends. We sincerely hope those dedicated staff, who have become part of the Football Conference family over the last two seasons, will continue to operate and work at the highest level in sports broadcasting and that their future remains positive."

To all our member clubs may we thank you for supporting Setanta and be assured that your Board together with all staff will be working hard to find another broadcast partner to further build on the ground work laid down by them in supporting our competition, which is at the very heart of English football.


The annual pre-season meeting of the Conference with its member clubs takes place today at Nene Park, Rushden. Andy Perry revealed on his twitter page that he is attending the meeting, as is joint owner Andy Saunders.

Any news from the meeting will appear here tonight.


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