Leeds will have to reveal owners if promoted

If Leeds are promoted they will have to reveal who owns them; there will (probably) never be another financial collapse like Portsmouth's; and the Premier League will neither cut matches nor move to the summer schedule to create a winter break. Those were the headline revelations from yesterday's evidence session of the Department of Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee inquiry into football governance at the Houses of Parliament.

MPs finally interrogated the men whose tanks are often said to be parked on the Football Association's lawn, the chairman and chief executive of the Premier League. They failed, though, to extract any confessions of guilt from either Sir David Richards or Richard Scudamore.

That was only to be expected of the latter, who showed the customary polished command of his brief. Richards, however, tends to be kept out of the public gaze for fear he shoots himself and his employers in the foot. Having been well prepped, he largely managed to avoid this, partly by leaving the complicated answers to Scudamore.

It was Scudamore who admitted the league should have been more pro-active with regard to Portsmouth entering administration, but said they never anticipated a club with Premier League income streams could get into such financial difficulties. He said procedures had now been strengthened to ensure such a situation never arose again. Among these is the requirement that all owners, including beneficiaries of discretionary trusts, are identified to the league.

This will become relevant should Leeds, currently in a promotion play-off position, go up. Last month Shaun Harvey, the club's chief executive, told the committee that as far as he was aware even chairman Ken Bates did not know the identity of the people behind the trust which controls 73 per cent of the club.

Scudamore said the league would "require disclosure from Leeds United". If that was not forthcoming, an independent disciplinary committee would assess punishment. Penalties ranged from a fine to expulsion, though Scudamore insisted the latter was unlikely.

Questioned about the possibility of a winter break being brought in to aid the England team, Scudamore said the problem was fixture congestion, and "the culprits" were Uefa and Fifa. He added there was "no way" the league would be cut to 18 clubs [a stipulation in the FA's original prospectus for the league] and "we would fight strongly against a summer calendar to protect the UK's sporting culture", by which he meant cricket.

Richards denied he had "bullied" the FA Board, an allegation made to the enquiry by former FA chairman Lord Triesman. He said he was "saddened and dejected" by the claim which "hurt" as he had campaigned against bullying for the NSPCC.

"It is a fair and democratic vote," said Richards, "to think the [three] Premier League chairmen could block nine others is ridiculous." This defence was undermined when he revealed that in his 16 years on the FA Board there had only been four issues put to a vote. That suggested Triesman was right to claim the game is governed by deals, threats, and meetings in corridors.

Arts and Entertainment
books
Voices
Caustic she may be, but Joan Rivers is a feminist hero, whether she likes it or not
voicesShe's an inspiration, whether she likes it or not, says Ellen E Jones
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and the Dalek meet
tvReview: Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Sport
Diego Costa
footballEverton 3 Chelsea 6: Diego Costa double has manager purring
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
3D printed bump keys can access almost any lock
techSoftware needs photo of lock and not much more
Arts and Entertainment
The 'three chords and the truth gal' performing at the Cornbury Music Festival, Oxford, earlier this summer
music... so how did she become country music's hottest new star?
Life and Style
The spy mistress-general: A lecturer in nutritional therapy in her modern life, Heather Rosa favours a Byzantine look topped off with a squid and a schooner
fashionEurope's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln
News
Dr Alice Roberts in front of a
peopleAlice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Star turns: Montacute House
tv
News
i100Steve Carell selling chicken, Tina Fey selling saving accounts and Steve Colbert selling, um...
Arts and Entertainment
Unsettling perspective: Iraq gave Turner a subject and a voice (stock photo)
booksBrian Turner's new book goes back to the bloody battles he fought in Iraq
News
The Digicub app, for young fans
advertisingNSPCC 'extremely concerned'
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Some of the key words and phrases to remember
booksA user's guide to weasel words
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor
She's dark, sarcastic, and bashes life in Nowheresville ... so how did Kacey Musgraves become country music's hottest new star?

Kacey Musgraves: Nashville's hottest new star

The singer has two Grammys for her first album under her belt and her celebrity fans include Willie Nelson, Ryan Adams and Katy Perry
American soldier-poet Brian Turner reveals the enduring turmoil that inspired his memoir

Soldier-poet Brian Turner on his new memoir

James Kidd meets the prize-winning writer, whose new memoir takes him back to the bloody battles he fought in Iraq
Aston Villa vs Hull match preview: Villa were not surprised that Ron Vlaar was a World Cup star

Villa were not surprised that Vlaar was a World Cup star

Andi Weimann reveals just how good his Dutch teammate really is
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef ekes out his holiday in Italy with divine, simple salads

Bill Granger's simple Italian salads

Our chef presents his own version of Italian dishes, taking in the flavours and produce that inspired him while he was in the country
The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

If supporters begin to close bank accounts, switch broadband suppliers or shun satellite sales, their voices will be heard. It’s time for revolution