Could performance-related pay at Ipswich Town be the future?
- Credit: Archant
Ipswich Town should consider introducing performance-related pay for players and put more sponsorship on their famous blue and white kit, according to a leading football finance expert.
As part of the new Financial Fair Play model, Championship clubs making losses of more than £6m will be fined millions of pounds or put under a transfer embargo from the 2014-15 season, while owner Marcus Evans will be restricted to investing just £5m next campaign.
Clubs therefore will become ever-more reliant on gate receipts but, according to football finance expert Rob Wilson, a principal lecturer at Sheffield Hallam University, can increase their revenue streams through a host of different commercial opportunities.
Town’s home and away shirts have been sponsored by Evans for the previous five years but that could change from August, should the Town owner go with a different name, rather than renew his own deal which has expired.
The club has held talks with potential sponsors and a decision is likely to be made in the next fortnight.
“Championship, League One and League Two clubs have got to be more commercially-savvy, and there has to be more diversity in terms of income,” said Wilson.
“There are such areas as training ground naming rights, being more creative with advertising boards and sponsoring training kit.
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“The sponsorship regulations in the Championship are a lot looser compared to those in the Premier League and there are opportunities for different sponsors to have their names on the neck and bottom of the team shirts, while some teams also have sponsors’ names on the back of their shorts too.
“The Olympic model is a good one to follow. “Clubs can have official soft drink suppliers for instance.”
Wilson also believes having performance-related incentives would help clubs garner a stronger team spirit and avoid racking up potentially big debts by having players on big, long-term contracts.
QPR, who will be playing in the Championship next season, have a wages-to-turnover ratio of almost 100% and have players such as Christopher Samba who is reportedly on a four-year contract, earning £100,000 a week.
He added: “I would also look to bring in performance-related pay which would encourage the club to pull together as a business and create a stronger team spirit.
“Players would have a lower basic wage and clubs’ costs would be variable depending on their success.
“Money going out would be up and down each week and would be linked to success, but evidence shows that the more success a club has, the bigger the gates.
“In turn bigger gates would allow clubs to pay their players more.”