Cortese hits out at spending controls
Southampton's executive chairman Nicola Cortese has criticised the Premier League's decision to impose wage and spending controls on member clubs.
Saints have reported a £0.9million profit for the last six months of 2012, helped by the increased income of being promoted to the top flight. That result, and a wage bill that is 59% of turnover, would see Southampton comfortably comply with the new financial regulations, but Italian banker Cortese insists owners should be allowed to run their clubs as they wish.
He said: "Our results also demonstrate we are already operating within the spirit of likely new Premier League financial regulations in respect of average profits and losses over three years. We believe very strongly that each club should continue to be permitted to run their business - including their pay rolls - as they see fit. This is fundamental to the future integrity of football."
Southampton were one of six top-flight clubs that voted against the spending controls, which were agreed by the narrowest majority at a Premier League chairmen's meeting last month, but Cortese is the first chairman to speak out publicly against them.
The regulations will restrict the amount of losses clubs can make to £105million over three years, and clubs whose total wage bill is more than £52million will only be allowed to increase their wages by £4million per season for the next three years. Clubs will face a points deduction if they breach the new controls.
The Premier League chairmen will be presented with the detailed spending control plans at a meeting in mid-April.