Top-flight clubs urged to share TV cash with struggling sides

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The Independent Football

Wealthy Premiership football clubs should be forced to share the cash from lucrative television deals with struggling lower league clubs, an influential think-tank report will argue this week.

The Institute for Public Policy Research is to publish Trust in Football - a new approach to financing the game that aims to ensure fans get a proper deal from the clubs they support and to inject some fairness in funding of the sport - on Wednesday.

It will be endorsed by the Government at a launch attended by the sports minister, Richard Caborn, on the eve of the Labour Party conference next Sunday.

The report will call on the leading clubs to help bridge the gulf between themselves and ailing grassroots football clubs and organisations.

"The game is suffering because of the huge discrepancies in wealth between the very big clubs and ordinary local football clubs. There needs to be more distribution of resources," a source close to the report said.

The study, put together by Matt Jackson and Paul Maltby of the IPPR, will also argue that the Football Association needs to be reformed and should become independent of the football clubs.