Forest's promotion gamble highlights football's cash divide

NOTTINGHAM Forest yesterday highlighted the growing gulf between the financial fortunes of football clubs in the Premier League and the First Division by suggesting it would have to sell star players and slash costs if its gamble to win promotion this season fails.

The club, which was relegated from the Premiership last season, but is currently second in the First Division behind Middlesborough, is clocking up huge losses by keeping on expensive players in a make-or-break effort to get back to the top.

In an example of how the influence of the City has pervaded the modern game, Nottingham Forest will have to cut back dramatically on expenses to make up for lost millions of TV revenues if it stays in the lower division.

"As a public limited company, over the long term our cost base has got to be in line with our revenues. We are very conscious of the fact that we cannot keep on losing money," said Philip Soar, Nottingham Forest's chief executive yesterday.

The average Premier League club receives pounds 8m from BSkyB, the satellite broadcaster, to screen live games. However First Division clubs typically get just pounds 800,000. That gap is due to widen even further, with teams in the top flight likely to receive payments well in excess of pounds 10m over the coming few seasons.

Nottingham Forest made a loss of pounds 6.5m in the six months to November. The players and staff bill of pounds 4.7m meant it made a loss of pounds 2.4m at the operating level. It also spent pounds 4m on transfer fees.

A group of financiers, including Philip Soar, Nigel Wray, the property magnate, and Irving Scholar, the former Tottenham chairman, bought the club, famous as 1979 and 1980 European Cup winners, in March for pounds 16m. Since then they have spent pounds 11m on players, and only raised pounds 3.5m from transfers, including the sale of Brian Roy, the Dutch international.

The club raised pounds 2.6m by selling new shares at 70p, in a flotation last October. However the shares fell another 1p to 57.5p yesterday. Mr Soar said the poor performance matched the slump in football sector generally which has proved a turn off for investors over the last 12 months.

Meanwhile Wigan Athletic, another club hoping to break into the big time, announced that it had appointed Alfred McAlpine, the construction group, to build a pounds 24.5m new 25,000 all-seater stadium.

David Whelan, chairman of Wigan Athletic, plans to build a dual purpose stadium on the site of an old athletics ground at Robin Park, which will also house Wigan Warriors, the rugby league team. Mr Whelan raised almost pounds 17m last summer from selling shares in JJB Sports, his sports goods retail chain, to fund the new development.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
The veteran poverty campaigner Sir Bob Geldof issues a stark challenge to emerging economies at the Melbourne HIV/Aids conference
health
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch and John Malkovich talk Penguins of Madagascar at Comic-Con
comic-con 2014Cumberbatch fans banned from asking about Sherlock at Comic-Con
Arts and Entertainment
Chris Pratt stars in Guardians of the Galaxy
filmGuardians Of The Galaxy should have taken itself a bit more seriously, writes Geoffrey Macnab
News
Sir Chris Hoy won six Olympic golds - in which four events?
news
Life and Style
People may feel that they're procrastinating by watching TV in the evening
life
News
Lars Ulrich of Metallica performs on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury 2014
people
Arts and Entertainment
film
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
News
video
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Up my street: The residents of the elegant Moray Place in Edinburgh's Georgian New Town
tvBBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past
Extras
indybest
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Associate Recruitment Consultant - IT

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: Computer Futures has been est...

Business Analyst

£300 - £350 per day: Orgtel: Job Title: Business Analyst Rate: £300 - £350 per...

Trade Desk Specialist (Linux, Windows, FIX, Finance, Networks)

£60000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Trade Desk Specialist (Linux, Windows, FIX...

Associate CXL Consultant

£40000 - £60000 per annum + BONUS + BENEFITS: Harrington Starr: CXL, Triple Po...

Day In a Page

Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform