SL deal halved!

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  • #6302
    sandgroper
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    The severe cut in Sky’s SL deal has to send a message to the game’s managers regarding just how marketable the game is.

    There are many up and coming potential ‘gameshow’ sports – break-dancing for instance!!! Sky are plainly looking for new attractions and RL isn’t a major contender. The game needs a shake up from top to bottom.

    If RL isn’t deemed to be TV material then we need to make attendance on the day a more important factor. When even major clubs see a drop in attendance questions need to be asked and action taken to boost attendances.

    For too long the RFL/SL managers have rested on Sky’s bounty, that needs to change.

    #6304
    Spike Island 90
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    The severe cut in Sky’s SL deal has to send a message to the game’s managers regarding just how marketable the game is. There are many up and coming potential ‘gameshow’ sports – break-dancing for instance!!! Sky are plainly looking for new attractions and RL isn’t a major contender. The game needs a shake up from top to bottom. If RL isn’t deemed to be TV material then we need to make attendance on the day a more important factor. When even major clubs see a drop in attendance questions need to be asked and action taken to boost attendances. For too long the RFL/SL managers have rested on Sky’s bounty, that needs to change.

     

    Good, let’s hope the game dies in its current format. I will say it again, the game should be part time or wages seriously reduced, no player or director should be earning 6 figures.

    #6305
    CJ91
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    Union and the NRL will be licking their lips.

    From our perspective though, perhaps the moans and groans about the academy etc from people (including myself!) will actually be shown to be good forward planning as it would seem to me that the Championship will get practically nothing and well ran part-time sides will flourish…..

    #6306
    sandgroper
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    The SL were loathe to share anyway. To go back to the future we could do with reviving visiting supporters paying for the privilege.

    If there are any TV games the teams on the field should be recompensed for the reduction in crowd numbers. Certainl the clubs have to insist on having a bigger say in any changes made. The new situation makes schemes such as VIQI vital, hopefully our early start will benefit us.

    #6307
    Magnus
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    From my understanding the £20 million doesn’t cover coverage for the leagues outside of SL – but I doubt anyone would be willing to put their hands in their pocket to spend any money on it. Maybe we could charge a minimum just to raise the profile of the game on a terrestrial station – maybe.  What a sad state of affairs.

    Shame given the the Championship could be really competitive next season – just so long as the new super strain of C19 doesn’t scupper it!

    I understand that SL clubs don’t want their finances reduced so we minions will receive the full force of the reduction – life out of SL could be a very frugal world indeed.  Some clubs will go extinct or become so amateurish that they will be there simply to make up the numbers.

    A new revitalised Widnes should be able to do well as a reasonably large fish in a small pond but within the next few years we’ll see the spectre of a ‘closed shop’ SL with no P&R.

    The question I have to ask myself is whether Widnes is a SL club – I’d have to say no. I think there would have to be a radical change to the game for us to be viable in SL. I know for some, being in SL is the be-all-and-end-all but frankly, it’s a very painful place to be, especially if you don’t have a kindly millionaire throwing money at the club.

    #6308
    CJ91
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    I think also a question is how will your Salford’s and Wakefield’s be able to cope with the new situation?

    I think Private Equity will be coveted by the SL hierarchy, which will be more disposed to corporate expansion….

     

    #6309
    sandgroper
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    If Sky can chop their price in half then SL hasn’t got much bargaining power, and it’s on a downward path.

    The cut to Championship will really hurt clubs on the edge and emphasises the growing distance between SL and the rest.

    Either the RFL or the clubs themselves move to improve the Championship finances or it will implode. From the RL Express item the RFL are hoping for anybody to take the TV rights. That would be an easy option but seems unlikely tbh.

    Imho it will fall to the clubs to move things along, and that will need a strong personality to lead.

    Maybe its a bit early to count the SL out but I guarantee that McManus, Lenehan & co will be thinking hard about the future! I don’t know much about equity companies but it sounds very much like an even bigger sellout than SL /Sky was.

    #6310
    Royston Vasey
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    It’s just another proof that there is no future for a sustainable professional, full time Rugby League in the UK / Europe

    The decline of the professional game has accelerated because of the pandemic but it’s inevitable anyway.

    There’s no real junior / grassroots game in the north of England now, let alone anywhere else (outside of NSW and Queensland). There is no next generation of players or spectators.

    There is no support structure : youth / academy / reserves outside of SL

    Funding has been halved for SL and Sky is signalling a falling away of interest on their part, based, I assume, on dwindling viewing figures.

    What next ? An 8 team ‘Premier’ league with amalgamated regional sides – East Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, Merseyside, South Lancs, North Lancs, Cumbria etc ?

    The sooner the Championship and teams below break away and form a semi-pro game the better . I propose a breakaway meeting, perhaps in a pub in Huddersfield for early nest year – who’s with me ?

    #6311
    Ceejay1
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    From what I understand the £20m p.a. is the opening offer from SKY that has not been accepted by the SL nor does it include the TV rights for the Championship or League 1 clubs..   Negotiations will still be ongoing and other broadcasters will be approached.

    #6312
    Royston Vasey
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    From what I understand the £20m p.a. is the opening offer from SKY that has not been accepted by the SL nor does it include the TV rights for the Championship or League 1 clubs.. Negotiations will still be ongoing and other broadcasters will be approached.

    Fair enough – it might be the start of a negotiation process but SL is treading a very dangerous path – the product isn’t selling and the recent failure of Toronto for whatever reason does exactly encourage confidence amongst (potential) sponsors.

    The reduced initial offer is even more of a cutback when you take inflation into account since the existing agreement was signed and to be honest I don’t see anybody outbidding Sky.

     

    #6313
    CJ91
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    Realistically, which other companies would be able to outbid SKY?

    BT maybe, but they are heavily into RU.

    Amazon, but would they get a return on investment in terms of RL fans and Sports fans more widely buying Prime?

    SKY hold the aces.

    #6314
    Spike Island 90
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    You are correct, however, I wouldn’t even be pandering the RFL in believing any credible broadcaster would bid for RL. The sport is lucky sky have been involved for so long, giving out millions to a regional sport that is watched by few is ludicrous.

    #6315
    Spike Island 90
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    It’s just another proof that there is no future for a sustainable professional, full time Rugby League in the UK / Europe The decline of the professional game has accelerated because of the pandemic but it’s inevitable anyway. There’s no real junior / grassroots game in the north of England now, let alone anywhere else (outside of NSW and Queensland). There is no next generation of players or spectators. There is no support structure : youth / academy / reserves outside of SL Funding has been halved for SL and Sky is signalling a falling away of interest on their part, based, I assume, on dwindling viewing figures. What next ? An 8 team ‘Premier’ league with amalgamated regional sides – East Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, Merseyside, South Lancs, North Lancs, Cumbria etc ? The sooner the Championship and teams below break away and form a semi-pro game the better . I propose a breakaway meeting, perhaps in a pub in Huddersfield for early nest year – who’s with me ?

     

    I continue to say it, what right does rl have to be a full time sport? Union was amateur for 100 years, RL was largely part time for decades yet since the transition into full Time, has the sport improved? No.

    I say either, make RL part time or make it a low wage sport, where the basic wage is £400 a week and players get £350 for the win. Thus, you are killing 2 birds one stone, no more dead rubber games and the game becomes more financially sustainable.

    #6316
    sandgroper
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    From the start the SL has been overfed from the Sky fee plus bungs from the wealthy owners. Their staff numbers have grown and a reduction in Sky’s offer will mean staff cuts. WHILEithout a guaranteed sum to the Championship it shouldn’t be included in a TV deal.

    From the start the aim was to reduce the number of clubs overall and that might happen with a bad Sky deal. It is plain that a few clubs, without Sky handouts, would fall. Their only saviour would be a rejuvenation of support on the ground or a financial saviour. Not easy to come by these days.

    The option of selling the game to a Hearn type of project would result in a hybrid gameshow, lucrative to some but not RL as we know it. Matthew Shaws item in the Express is interesting and might spark some comment. One thing is sure, whatever happens, our failed managers will stay in post on at least the same salaries!

    #6317
    Spike Island 90
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    From the start the SL has been overfed from the Sky fee plus bungs from the wealthy owners. Their staff numbers have grown and a reduction in Sky’s offer will mean staff cuts. WHILEithout a guaranteed sum to the Championship it shouldn’t be included in a TV deal. From the start the aim was to reduce the number of clubs overall and that might happen with a bad Sky deal. It is plain that a few clubs, without Sky handouts, would fall. Their only saviour would be a rejuvenation of support on the ground or a financial saviour. Not easy to come by these days. The option of selling the game to a Hearn type of project would result in a hybrid gameshow, lucrative to some but not RL as we know it. Matthew Shaws item in the Express is interesting and might spark some comment. One thing is sure, whatever happens, our failed managers will stay in post on at least the same salaries!

     

    Those vulture capitalist types are looking for short-term investment and reward, look at the Hearns, once SKY pulled money from boxing in the 2000s, they left the sport until 2011 when Sky began to invest.

    The issue with RL isn’t branding, marketing etc, it is the fact that people in the UK largely view it as an inferior game to union.

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