Belfast Telegraph

Irish FA will not let their clubs slide, says Patrick Nelson

Irish FA chief executive Patrick Nelson last night told the Belfast Telegraph that the governing body is ready to help out any club that hits stormy financial waters.

Names are being added to the list of those struggling to stay afloat with alarming regularity, with Championship side Larne revealing that they are in need of help from supporters and local businesses in order to meet their wage bill for the next couple of months.

The demise of the now defunct Omagh Town, some five years ago, hasn’t served as a warning to those who have still to get their houses in order.

Glentoran survived a winding-up order in the High Court last week, but aren’t completely out of the woods yet. Lisburn Distillery have tried — and so far failed — to sell their New Grosvenor ground in order to stay in business, while another Championship outfit, Limavady United, are understood to be battling against a whopping tax bill.

“Over the last year we have had a policy of doing everything we can to help clubs, within the resources that we’ve got,” said Nelson.

“And we are always open to talking to clubs if they have difficulties to see if there is anything that we can do to help them.”

And Nelson claims that the IFA have already taken a major step in assisting Premiership clubs to take a better control of their finances.

“We’ve got a salary cap in place now in the Premiership, which is there to help clubs help themselves,” said Nelson.

“It is advisory this season, compulsory next season.

“Clubs can only spend 55 per cent of their audited turnover on player wages and to me it makes enormous sense.”

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