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'Safer landing' plan causes non-league fury


As we have pointed out in recent articles, relegation from the Football League to the non-league system often lands a club in serious financial trouble.   The Football League has now devised a 'safer landing' plan, but this has provoked fury from non-league clubs.

The two demoted clubs currently receive half of what continuing League Two clubs receive.  However, from next season they will receive the whole amount in the first year after relegation and half in the following season (unless they receive promotion back to the Football League).   This means that a relegated club that doesn't go straight back up will pick up around £711,000 over two seasons instead of almost £250,000.

Braintree Town chairman Lee Harding has accused the FA of trying to destroy the non-league game by giving relegated clubs 'a free pass' back into League Two.   He claimed that the FA was rewarding failure.   He stated that the amount one of these clubs would make in parachute payments was two or three times the Iron's playing budget (which suggest they are not splashing the cash in Essex).

The shell shocked supremo told The Non-League Paper, 'The concept of parachute payments is correct, but to give two clubs such a monumental head-start over others at this level of the game is unacceptable.   The two coming down will hold an enormous financial advantage.  We get £40,000 from central funding for being National League members.'

Clubs relegated from the Championship and League One are also set to get a bigger sum.   In the current season this would have been £120,000 and £50,000 respectively, but this is being increased to £230,000 and £85,000.