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EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Discussion started by Darraghgirl , 28 November, 2019 20:31
EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Darraghgirl 28 November, 2019 20:31
It has been a difficult few weeks for rugby in general and supporters of Saracens in particular. Not surprisingly our message board has been dominated by multiple threads relating to the salary cap breach. Most of the comments have been polite and well-reasoned although a few have not. However it has made it difficult for Saracens’ supporters to use the Message Board in the way it was intended – to talk about our team and all matters rugby-related among ourselves.
The Mods have decided therefore that we will open THIS single, sticky Salary Cap thread. Everyone, Saracens or otherwise, is welcome to post on there about anything related to the Salary Cap breach, appeal or no appeal, mid-term audit and any other fall out. Please keep comments relevant, respectful and not repetitive. All other Salary Cap-related threads will be closed and any new ones, or salary cap posts on non-related threads, will be deleted (unless there is a new revelation deserving of its own thread!).
Thank you everyone in advance for your co-operation.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 24/01/2020 15:55 by Darraghgirl.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
TonyTaff 28 November, 2019 21:43
Roll up, roll up!

Supporters of all clubs and of none are most welcome hereon.



£721.05 (*) donated to the Saracens Foundation due to visits to the Sarries frontpage [www.rugbynetwork.net]

Please read and submit articles for publication.


(*) As at October 31, 2018.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Roger G 29 November, 2019 08:03
Just a suggestion for the mods...if posts are deleted on other threads could the deletion include a standard note directing the poster to this thread. Otherwise there'll be people bleating that the board is just deleting all posts about the SC.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
myleftboot 29 November, 2019 09:16
Nah, just delete them. It's pretty clear, the first post you see on the page. If you choose to ignore it, it gets zapped! Problem will be the policing of it, the celery debate crosses over into practically any historic topic, and I don't envy you mods job!

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Darraghgirl 29 November, 2019 17:22
We will do our best!
All the other threads are now closed (I think)
Any new ones will be closed unless they are relevant or interesting in which case I will merge them with Salary cap one.

Feel free to PM me if anyone finds an errant post I have missed

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
TonyTaff 02 December, 2019 13:02
[www.planetrugby.com]

Take That!



£721.05 (*) donated to the Saracens Foundation due to visits to the Sarries frontpage [www.rugbynetwork.net]

Please read and submit articles for publication.


(*) As at October 31, 2018.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
1876-Fez 13 December, 2019 13:45
Just in case anyone had missed Baxter's views in the T'graph yesterday..

Article below:

Rob Baxter, the Exeter director of rugby, believes that there is yet more to come from scrutiny into Saracens’ salary-cap transgressions and that a line has not yet been drawn under the matter.
The formal inquiry concluded with the European and Premiership champions being docked 35 points and fined £5.36 million for breaches of the regulations stretching back over three years.
Exeter have been denied Premiership titles by Saracens during two of those three seasons and the sense of injustice which was expressed by the club when news of the sanctions first broke in early November shows no signs of easing ahead of the first meeting between the clubs, at Sandy Park on Dec 29.
“We’ve given Saracens all the ammunition they need [with our comments] for them to come here massively psyched up,” Baxter said. “I don’t believe that a line has been drawn in the sand, not by any means, [in terms of what went on] and we are not at the end of that process. That will make it interesting [on Dec 29]. It will make it a great test for us on the field.
“I’ve moved on from worrying about any Saracens’ result because I don’t see how they mean much to anyone any more. I look at the other 10 Premiership clubs, but there is one club whose results I don’t set any store by now because we don’t know if there is any honesty behind them. There certainly hasn’t been for three years.”
Baxter used to study Saracens in detail while working to improve ­Exeter’s fortunes as they strove to become champions themselves.
“How Saracens play now is the least important thing for me in the Premiership,” Baxter said. “What I used to do is watch them in order to learn from it, learn how to try to beat them. Now the big lesson on how you achieve what Saracens have achieved is to be outside the rules that we are all adhering to.”



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Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
BlackheathSaracen 13 December, 2019 15:00
I'd expect that sort of comment from Rowe but this is just ignorant from Baxter which is unlike him.

If he really thinks there's nothing to be learnt from how Saracens play simply because of the cap overspend then he's a fool. Worse news for Chiefs he's a fool they've just signed up for another four seasons. He seems like a brilliant DoR to me and I could understand if that's his heart talking rather than head. Will be interesting to see if there is anything further to come re Saracens or if this is simply part of the narrative that Chiefs will drive from now on?

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
jonnybrowne 13 December, 2019 16:22
For a club he no longer sees as “real”, and whose results he claims not to worry about any more, he seems all too happy to talk about us.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Banzai1314 13 December, 2019 19:49
Not sure whether SimonG19 sucks lemons all day or sits on broken glass first thing in the morning just to get really angry. Either way he’s not very happy 😂

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Banzai1314 13 December, 2019 19:51
Quote:
Banzai1314
Not sure whether SimonG19 sucks lemons all day or sits on broken glass first thing in the morning just to get really angry. Either way he’s not very happy 😂

.... and really likes to use the word cheat, cheated or cheating.Bless.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Roger G 13 December, 2019 21:08
Quote:
1876-Fez
“How Saracens play now is the least important thing for me in the Premiership,” Baxter said.

Can't say I'm over-fussed about Chiefs games either so that evens things up. (Sm100)

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Banzai1314 13 December, 2019 22:10
If ever the boys needed something to motivate themselves for the Exeter game ,just pin this article to the changing room wall.

Thanks Rob

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
myleftboot 14 December, 2019 00:18
Is the daily hate making this up or is there a snitch in the camp? Like Merseyside and the S*n, just don't kids
[www.dailymail.co.uk]

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
myleftboot 14 December, 2019 01:43
Oh, and in other breaking news, the daily @#$%& lifted my comments ban, but delete any pro Sarries comment. Anyone would think they had a vested interest......

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Roger G 14 December, 2019 09:30
Quote:
myleftboot
Is the daily hate making this up or is there a snitch in the camp? Like Merseyside and the S*n, just don't kids
[www.dailymail.co.uk]

What's the gist of this please? My adblocker won't let me look at the artcile, even if I turn it off for the Daily Hate site - a lucky escape maybe.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
tpr's headmistress 14 December, 2019 16:08
You can temporarily switch off Adblock for a read then put it on again (there's a toggle button when you open ABP on the top bar). However the ads drive you mad and it takes forever to get anywhere while they load.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Sarriebone 14 December, 2019 17:01
Quote:
Roger G
Quote:
myleftboot
Is the daily hate making this up or is there a snitch in the camp? Like Merseyside and the S*n, just don't kids
[www.dailymail.co.uk]

What's the gist of this please? My adblocker won't let me look at the artcile, even if I turn it off for the Daily Hate site - a lucky escape maybe.

Basically some players may look elsewhere if we get relegated.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Roger G 14 December, 2019 18:49
Quote:
tpr's headmistress
You can temporarily switch off Adblock for a read then put it on again (there's a toggle button when you open ABP on the top bar). However the ads drive you mad and it takes forever to get anywhere while they load.

As I said, that didn't work - the little button clearly said Adblock was off, but it still wouldn't show me the article. However, a kind soul has shared it with me so my curiosity is satisfied.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
tpr's headmistress 14 December, 2019 19:09
Sorry Roger, I didn't read your post thoroughly. (Sm54)

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Steve_M 15 December, 2019 02:13
Firstly I am not a Saracens fan, I follow this site as I do other club sites out of interest but this is my first posting and yes it’s on the salary cap issue. I am not trying to stir things up again but am posting with a genuine question which, as fans closer to the action than I am, someone on this site may be able to answer.

OK, so the club has been found guilty of salary cap breaches over the previous few seasons and I believe this is now widely accepted to have been the case. Can anyone tell me what steps they believe have been taken by the club to ensure that this isn’t the case in this current season ?

I have seen posters on here suggest that as the ‘investments’ were a one-off they would only have counted in that one season and if no more are made this year then that is fine. But is it ? As I understand the regulations on this any payment to a player that constitutes salary is averaged out over the course of a player’s contract to prevent front-loading, back-loading, etc of payments. If the averaged out payments for the investments were sufficient to put the club over the cap previously then surely they will again this season ? There have been a couple of player movements but nothing on balance to make a great difference.

There have also been calls for spot checks, mid-season reviews etc but I fail to see how these could work. A club can be paying whatever they like at any particular point in a season but it is not till that season has been completed that the cap expenditure can be fully assessed. I do agree with other posters on this site that if there were to be checks of this nature then they should extend to all clubs but, as I said, not really sure what the point of these would be.

I look around the squads of the other Premiership clubs, most of whom claim they are paying up to the cap, and their first choice 23’s are probably on a par with the ‘2nd teams’ that Sarries have been fielding recently in terms of international players. The strength of the Sarries squad defies all logic as possibly being beneath the cap. There is talk of Sinckler going to Bristol at £600,000, George Ford on the same at Leicester so surely Itoje, George, the Vunipolas, Farrell, Koch, to name but a few will be earning similar if not more than this; that’s half the cap gone on 6 players.

I guess we will all have to wait till this season is complete but unfortunately I don’t for one moment think this episode in the clubs history has ended yet.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
myleftboot 15 December, 2019 09:28
It's very easy to play "fantasy rugby" when comparing squads. I would suggest you need to look at the circumstances said players came to their clubs to compare relative cost.

Of your few named, Itoje, George and Farrell, our academy. Vunipolae, Mako came from the Championship with a lot of promise, yes, but a gamble if you like, shown by how long from signing to being an established first team er, and Billy was just capped, but it was a one horse race, his mother wanted both boys on the same side and it was felt Wasps treatment of him was poor. Koch was recently out of favour at international level.

I'm not saying that means they were all cheap, but all have mitigating circumstances compared to, say, Bath going out and buying the NotNots academy, why their wages might be slightly less than the "fantasy rugby might suggest. And yes, at least 3 of those are widely touted to be coinvested with Mr Wray...

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Steve_M 15 December, 2019 09:51
Quote:
myleftboot
It's very easy to play "fantasy rugby" when comparing squads. I would suggest you need to look at the circumstances said players came to their clubs to compare relative cost.
Of your few named, Itoje, George and Farrell, our academy. Vunipolae, Mako came from the Championship with a lot of promise, yes, but a gamble if you like, shown by how long from signing to being an established first team er, and Billy was just capped, but it was a one horse race, his mother wanted both boys on the same side and it was felt Wasps treatment of him was poor. Koch was recently out of favour at international level.

I'm not saying that means they were all cheap, but all have mitigating circumstances compared to, say, Bath going out and buying the NotNots academy, why their wages might be slightly less than the "fantasy rugby might suggest. And yes, at least 3 of those are widely touted to be coinvested with Mr Wray...

I'm not arguing about where/how you sourced these players myleftboot but are you trying to tell me that Itoje, George and Farrell are still on academy wages and Mako on a Championship level salary ... of course they're not, they're being paid their going value. Koch has just returned a winner from a world cup. That's all been done to death on here anyway and it would be boring to all to rehash it and that wasn't my intention when posting.

My particular question was did anyone know what has changed since the previous few seasons to bring the club under the cap this year ?

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Roger G 15 December, 2019 09:55
Quote:
myleftboot
....And yes, at least 3 of those are widely touted to be coinvested with Mr Wray...

It's more than "widely touted" MLB. You can check out the involvement of at least four of them on Companies House.

However, although I accept we've been found in breach of the SC rules, I do wonder how many of the players invloved would have left the club if the investments hadn't been in place. I suspect not many, if any, which is why I'm peed off with Nigel for taking the risk without getting unequivocal prior acceptance from the SCM.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Roger G 15 December, 2019 10:32
Quote:
Steve_M
My particular question was did anyone know what has changed since the previous few seasons to bring the club under the cap this year ?

You're making the assumption that something has to change, based on your own assement of what they must be earning. However, although it's hard to know the truth without the full judgement being published, there were many press reports that the club hadn't breached the basic cap (plus academy, injury and international allowances), and that the only issue was these one-off investments. Presumably any accrual of these across contracts must've been taken into account otherwise subsequent contract extensions could have clouded the calculation of the fine somewhat. What is also never referred to by our critics is the retirement or release of some probable significant earners (e.g. Bosch, Burger).

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Steve_M 15 December, 2019 11:09
Quote:
Roger G
Quote:
Steve_M
My particular question was did anyone know what has changed since the previous few seasons to bring the club under the cap this year ?

You're making the assumption that something has to change, based on your own assement of what they must be earning. However, although it's hard to know the truth without the full judgement being published, there were many press reports that the club hadn't breached the basic cap (plus academy, injury and international allowances), and that the only issue was these one-off investments. Presumably any accrual of these across contracts must've been taken into account otherwise subsequent contract extensions could have clouded the calculation of the fine somewhat. What is also never referred to by our critics is the retirement or release of some probable significant earners (e.g. Bosch, Burger).

I would suggest that players coming in pretty well balance out players going. But ...totally ignore what I think these players may be earning as that has no effect on my question.

If Sarries top players have not signed new contracts for this season then the same percentage of the investments will count this year as they did last year and the year previous, there is no such thing as a 'one-off', that is the whole point of averaging out payments across the length of a contract. Once these players sign new contracts things may be different.

By the way, thank you Roger and myleftboot for entering into a civil discussion of this.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Sarriebone 15 December, 2019 11:27
The problem is that there is far too much speculation, and far too little information forthcoming from PRL.
The detractors will say that those big name players only stayed at the club because of those extra payments , the problem is that that is as much speculation as any Sarries fan saying the players would have stayed even without said payments, the truth is we'll never know.

We can quote our departing players all we want but all the detractors will see is the fact we've signed Daly. The fact he's played better for us in 3 matches that he did in the last year at Wasps, couldn't possibly have anything to do with the fact he may not have been happy there anymore and of course it must be because we're paying him a shedload more than they did...(Sm161) I don't mean that as a dig at Wasps, no-one knows why Daly wanted to move teams, and I suspect we won't, not a for a good few years at least.

At htis point even if a player were to come out and say "I'm taking less money to stay here than I've been offered elsewhere because we're winning stuff, it's a great environment and I love the club" no-one outside of Sarries supporters would believe it, whether it's true or not.

We don't know the full decision. It could be that as (according to NW) we were found to have not intentionally sought to break the cap that PRL would class the payments as a one off. As supporters I suppose we trust that the team aren't trying to break the cap and will have ensured that everything is above board for this season following the ruling.

Right now there is nothing Saracens can do to prove that they are obeying the SC regs, whatever is said won't be believe by those who don't want to believe it. A player stays with Saracens because Nigel pays the player's wife's sister's daughter's dog to come in and pretend to be a cleaner half an hour a week, obviously...



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 15/12/2019 11:36 by Sarriebone.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Steve_M 15 December, 2019 11:45
Totally agree with you Sarriebone on a number of your comments. What the players get paid is all conjecture, maybe they play for Sarries for next to nothing as they love the club, good for them. The judgement from PRL will probably never be released so again we will never know the full facts behind that.

Didnt Daly want to move to London to be with his girlfriend so I could believe that he would take a pay cut for that.

The one thing we do know for certain is that a panel decided that last year Sarries were in breach of the cap and if nothing has changed since that time, regardless of what the players were actually being paid last year, then if they are getting paid the same this year, regardless of how small their salaries may be, then surely they will be in breach again this season when things are totted up in the spring.

I will leave this topic now.

Cheers ...

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Roger G 15 December, 2019 11:53
I agree Sarriebone - too much speculation.

Quote:
Steve_M
.. If Sarries top players have not signed new contracts for this season then the same percentage of the investments will count this year as they did last year and the year previous, there is no such thing as a 'one-off', that is the whole point of averaging out payments across the length of a contract. Once these players sign new contracts things may be different.
By the way, thank you Roger and myleftboot for entering into a civil discussion of this.

Steve, is this not just some of that speculation on your part? Without having seen the whys and wherefores of the judgement, none of us really know the details of the offence, how the fine was calculated, and whether or not there is any reason to believe there is an ongoing problem.

Thank you also for providing some civility and rationale (even if I disagree with it). A refreshing change from those who have made up their minds about the current salary status in the absence of any details, who seem to think we, as fans, are somehow complicit and just come on here to call us names.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Roger G 15 December, 2019 11:55
Quote:
Steve_M
The one thing we do know for certain is that a panel decided that last year Sarries were in breach of the cap and if nothing has changed since that time, regardless of what the players were actually being paid last year, then if they are getting paid the same this year, regardless of how small their salaries may be, then surely they will be in breach again this season when things are totted up in the spring.

I think it's reasonable to expect that there will be no new co-investments, so something has already changed.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Sarriebone 15 December, 2019 11:59
It's certainly a valid question. I suspect it all comes down to how the PRL have viewed the extra payments.

It could be that while they deem them to be included under the term of the SC regs, they also acknowledge that it was never the NW's intention to breach the cap. So on that basis are happy enough to class them as being a one-off payment and not averaged out across the term of the contract.

It could also be that the players involved are now on new contracts to the ones they were on when the payments were made, therefore they would no longer be included in the cap.

I am aware that PRL found them to be reckless rather than deliberate. It is possible that Nigel's attitude was "it's been done before and been allowed so we can do it without checking first", Personally I would class that as reckless behaviour rather than deliberate.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
BlackheathSaracen 15 December, 2019 12:24
Quote:
Steve_M
maybe they play for Sarries for next to nothing as they love the club, good for them

I appreciate the reasonable questions and tone of your posts but for me this is typical of the nonsense that we have seen posted. No one is suggesting that they're being paid "next to nothing" so why juvenalise the argument by posting that? I'm staggered that it's a stretch for so many people that players or in fact anyone might take a pay cut to work somewhere they know the working atmosphere to be good, you're well looked after and your chances of success are high.

Quote:
Steve_M
The one thing we do know for certain is that a panel decided that last year Sarries were in breach of the cap and if nothing has changed since that time, regardless of what the players were actually being paid last year, then if they are getting paid the same this year, regardless of how small their salaries may be, then surely they will be in breach again this season when things are totted up in the spring.

Yes you're absolutely right "IF nothing has changed"but that does rather only work on the basis that Wray is happy to cop another points and financial fine next season and I'm not sure what the upside is for him there rather than get this all out of the way this season?

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
TonyTaff 15 December, 2019 12:25
If I were a player who had agreed to vary my contract, I would not be happy if the club were to disclose the details to anyone other than the Salary Cap Auditor!

Unsurprisingly, the club hasn't disclosed any of the information that Steve M requests.



£721.05 (*) donated to the Saracens Foundation due to visits to the Sarries frontpage [www.rugbynetwork.net]

Please read and submit articles for publication.


(*) As at October 31, 2018.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Duncan96 15 December, 2019 16:46
In respect of comments above as to whether we have to do anything to be under the salary cap this year can I please make the following point:

It appears we were only over the salary cap because of the investment companies. Basically NW made loans to companies part owned by the players.

This is caught by Clause 1 (d) of Schedule 1 of the Salary Cap regulations which states that "Salary" includes "any loan pursuant to which the Player or any Connected Party of the Player is not obliged to repay the full sum advance in the Salary Cap Year in which the loan is made".

In other words, because they weren't repayable within the season that they were made the loans were treated as Salary for that year.

So, provided there are no more investment companies this year, and it would be incredible if there were, and because we had more players out than in this season, it appears a reasonable assumption that we don't need to do anything to be under the cap.

We are being audited at present for the current year which will hopefully confirm that.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
JL904 19 December, 2019 15:29
PRL officially carrying out a comprehensive review of the SC regulations, lead by ex-minister Lord Myners.

HERE

May be worth a thread of its own?

It does seem like a significant development ... I can see the possibility of changes to the credits as other clubs have let young talent go to keep within the cap, and we've kept most of ours by cheating the regulations.



Wars begin when you will, but they do not end when you please - Niccolo Machiavelli

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Marlow Nick 19 December, 2019 16:04
I guess there are four fundamental questions that need answering and it's not clear which are in-scope for this review

1. What is the purpose of the cap? Do the clubs still want a set of rules intended to deliver on the stated objectives of a roughly level playing field that is affordable for everyone. If not scrap it. If you do want that then some of the rules need to be tightened because we are rapidly moving to a place where only 2-3 clubs can afford to subsidise the losses and clearly the current rules are not delivering a level playing field and the cap cannot be increased. Personally I think it was a mistake to increase the cap 5 years ago after the last time clubs were found to be overspending.

2. What should be excluded from the cap? Clearly there are still too many loopholes of interpretations. They have tried to make is a all encompassing and inclusive as possible and still Nigel (and presumably some of the other rich owners) seem to find novel interpretations that allow them to spend more than other clubs. Personally I think marquee players are skewing the league too much. I'd suggest they should be inside the cap. Clearly we need something to sort out the rules on co-investment / supporting players developing their post-rugby careers that encourages training but prevents business investments.

3. Compensation for EPS and Academy. It makes sense to provide compensation but who should be compensated? The team that employs an England player at maybe 3x the £/games rate (higher wages for fewer matches) or should we compensate the club that developed the player … and what does "developed" mean (academy or employed in the most recent years)? How do we set the compensation level? If it's too high then in effect EPS & academy are outside the cap and then we're back to a place where a few rich clubs can afford to buy the EPS players and write off the losses. Too small and we end up with clubs who have a strategy of not wanted EPS players. Maybe as well as a small increase in EPS compensation there needs to be a larger compensation for England Qualified.

4. Audit / transparency. As fans we may want more transparency but potentially that becomes a blocker to achieving better auditing. For example maybe the players should be asked to provide their tax returns - but in exchange for a promise that these remain strictly confidential.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Duncan96 19 December, 2019 16:27
I think that is a superb set of questions Nick.
I would only object to one part. In my opinion NW and the other directors backing of Wolfpack Lager, Tiki Tonga Coffee and George Kruis/Dominic Day's Medicinal Cannabis business etc is as admirable as anything any director of any Sporting club has ever done and should be a model for all professional Rugby clubs.

I have no truck with those who say ex Rugby players should just get a job, and the idea that players should not be helped to set up businesses before their career ends is offensive to me. It's not easy for sportsmen to transition to "normal" life. Indeed its often the cause of mental problems and if starting a business helps that, as Alistair Hargreaves has said it does, then who are we non players to say it should not be helped if that is what a player wants to do.

Therefore, business loans should be allowable and not count as salary (as they do at present) provided they are on arms length terms and pre cleared. Those two conditions would have ruled out the loans to the investment companies which I'm still baffled as to why those involved thought they would not come a cropper with.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Marlow Nick 19 December, 2019 18:49
Duncan,
What clubs should be encouraged to do is give the players time and training to support their new businesses but not cash/loans because that's too much a grey area and too much a question of who can afford to give/write-off loans. . Maybe there's an alternative that gives the arms-length detachment. Why not get all club owners to put some money into a pot administered by RPA (not PRL) with the objective of acting as a players' investment bank. All players have access. All loans must be repaid (eventually) with interest so after the initial funding it should be nett zero cost. There's no direct link between the club and the investment.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Duncan96 20 December, 2019 08:10
Doing it through the PRL will whither and die, Nick, and lose the anti inflationary benefits of doing it through the clubs. But I'll come on to why later.

First, all of the clubs could do this if they have the right culture. If you look at Wolfpack Lager, Tiki Tonga coffee etc, NW didn't put all the money in. He put together investor groupings by saying to his mates "I believe in this, I'm putting a bit of money in, will you join me?" The people he brought in were experienced business people who have helped these inexperienced (in a business sense) rugby players buck the trend of most start ups (which usually go bust) with help and advice well beyond the money (much better than the PRL could do it).

Look at all the other rugby club owners. They are similar types. They could do the same with their network of business contacts if they could be arsed. But why don't they? I think Jim Hamilton gave a clue to this: culture.

After the owner of Gloucester threw Wolfpack lager out of Gloucester for being a "bad thing" Jim gave a specific example of the difference in culture between Gloucester and Saracens:

When players are injured long term clubs have the right to halve their salaries after 12 months and terminate after 2 years. That right is used routinely at most clubs including Gloucester. It has never, ever been used at Saracens (which I'm sure Duncan Taylor is very grateful for).

So let those clubs with the right culture fly free on this subject and not be held back by the reactionary elements within the PRL. It's not difficult to make sure any loan element of such investments is arms length in its terms. Any high street accountant could have told the PRL that NW's loans to the property companies weren't arms length when there was no equity sitting behind them. It's not rocket science.

And lastly, doing it through the clubs is anti inflationary. Imagine you are a 27 year old rugby player, maybe newly married with an infant child. It's beginning to dawn on you that retirement is looming in 5 or so years. But you are at a club like Saracens which will actively assist you in what ever post retirement training you want .E.g. Schalk Brits was found a training placement at KPMG which he took up well before he retired. Even more than that, if you have a business idea which excites you the club will invest a bit in you, and bring other investors in to put together a team to help steer you through the choppy waters of being a start up.

The club did it. Not the PRL. So you are George Kruis. A British Lion and your contract comes up for renewal. How are you going to leave Saracens and take a more lucrative offer from Leicester who desperately need you and will pay more, when Saracens were integral to setting you up in the Medicinal Cannabis business you are pasionate about, and which is going to sustain you when you retire? You might leave Saracens for the extra money but it won't be easy. If the PRL had done it, it would be much easier to leave.

As a Saracens supporter this is an aspect of the club, together with the High School in a deprived area just down the road from me, the community work done a t Allianz Park, the work in prisons to stop people reoffending ..... the list goes on, that I'm very proud of. It's a revolutionary culture for a sporting organisation which extends to the treatment of the players.

Let the likes of Gloucester, who thought it was OK to pick on Alistair Hargreaves and Chris Wyles for having the temerity to start a business with help from their club, change their ways and catch up. Lets not make forward looking clubs like Saracens be tethered in this area by the likes of them, by insisting its all done through the PRL.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
myleftboot 20 December, 2019 09:07
But even the PRL fund would be open to abuse. Wasps could "encourage" their players to start up a PT business using this fund, in the local area, which could then be used to PT their players...

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
JO'G 20 December, 2019 09:50
I did like the suggestion from JR on Eggchasers that each and every player needed to sit down and write out their own personal Cap related information like a tax return. Help could be given bt a specialist rom the club, especially one armed with all the trips and items the player might forget were included.

The cap officer can then compare all the individual players ones with the clubs one to see if there are discrepancies. If a player is found not to have disclosed sometjnig that was also missing from the clubs disclosure, both should be fined The individual declarations should be totally confidential though and definitely not shared with other clubs

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Marlow Nick 20 December, 2019 12:11
Quote:
Duncan96
He put together investor groupings by saying to his mates "I believe in this, I'm putting a bit of money in, will you join me?" The people he brought in were experienced business people who have helped these inexperienced (in a business sense) rugby players buck the trend of most start ups (which usually go bust) with help and advice well beyond the money (much better than the PRL could do it).
Duncan, To my mind putting players in touch with advisors to reduce the risk of start-up failure is to be applauded and for me comes under the category of training/education/advice/non-financial-support. Where I think we're on a slippery slope is when money starts changing hands. " I'm putting a bit of money in, will you join me?" could turn into "if you don't want to put money in then what if I gave you money and then you put an equivalent amount in" which risks becoming money laundering to get round the cap - and increase the temptation to use one of the current loopholes which might be already being used by some clubs.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Duncan96 20 December, 2019 12:38
I think where we are departing from each other Nick is that I really don't think it's rocket science during the pre approval process to see whether the shares and loans are on an arms length basis.

Is the percentage of the company being received appropriate for the risk taken? Is the interest rate and security on the loans reasonable? Are the salaries to the players working in the business reasonable?

Those really aren't difficult questions for a professional to determine. If someone really wants to cheat there are a lot easier ways to do it which you've already identified yourself (offshore payments etc).

I've outlined above the very real benefits of allowing bona fide player businesses to be supported by clubs. I can't see that it's in the best interest of the game to prevent it for the reasons you give. Especially as I know from experience that the best, most committed advisors are those who have risked some money in you.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Blanchefleur 24 December, 2019 17:53
Duncan and Nick I think you both have very good ideas about how to improve the existing arrangements. However should the rules be tightened to such a degree that a player was effectively prevented from realizing his earnings potential, it would only take one disaffected player to bring a case possibly with the backing of the RPA for a restriction of earnings. With the cap much higher in France and non existent in Ireland there would be ample evidence to hand.
It's happened before where an individual changed the face of sport...Kolpak....and could easily happen again

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Roderick Flashheart 29 December, 2019 21:59
".........there are supporters of clubs who have seen coaches get sacked and players leave in part because of Saracens cheating.” Rob Baxter 29 Dec 2019.

Really ? Can we make a rough guess to ascertain which coaches and players left their clubs due to Saracens supremacy for the 3 seasons covered in the adjudication?

...or is this a throwaway comment made on spur of the moment during a time of jubilation, to a media hungry for such quotes ?

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
BlackheathSaracen 30 December, 2019 10:48
I am sure you can make that case Ricardo though its a somewhat flawed argument.

I'd guess he'd claim on the basis that the squad wasn't in cap that any team that played benefited. So even our second team beating Falcons contributed to them going down. The fact that we won the league maybe means that teams whose targets were to be top 4 or 6 or not relegated didn't make it and coaches payed the price.

What all that misses out is that if Saracens hadn't breached the cap they would still have been playing, they wouldn't have mysteriously disappeared from the equation. Maybe they wouldn't have got so far in Europe and so could have concentrated on the Premiership? Maybe those European games wouldn't have convinced Jones that he needed to denude the squad of a third of its starting XV for almost half or every season?

Who knows? maybe Chiefs one actual win wouldn't have come off the back of just beating a thoroughly knackered Saracens team who has played a European Champions Cup final and two other huge finals in the week and month before? Lots of things one could hypothesise on being different.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Duncan96 30 December, 2019 18:22
Quote:
BlackheathSaracen
I am sure you can make that case Ricardo though its a somewhat flawed argument.
I'd guess he'd claim on the basis that the squad wasn't in cap that any team that played benefited. So even our second team beating Falcons contributed to them going down. The fact that we won the league maybe means that teams whose targets were to be top 4 or 6 or not relegated didn't make it and coaches payed the price.

What all that misses out is that if Saracens hadn't breached the cap they would still have been playing, they wouldn't have mysteriously disappeared from the equation. Maybe they wouldn't have got so far in Europe and so could have concentrated on the Premiership? Maybe those European games wouldn't have convinced Jones that he needed to denude the squad of a third of its starting XV for almost half or every season?

Who knows? maybe Chiefs one actual win wouldn't have come off the back of just beating a thoroughly knackered Saracens team who has played a European Champions Cup final and two other huge finals in the week and month before? Lots of things one could hypothesise on being different.

All good points here but remember: the effect of us breaching the cap was Liam Williams. If we hadn't signed him we wouldn't have been over. So maybe Chiefs can complain about last season's final and maybe we wouldn't have beaten them with another winger. The rest of the time: @#$%& all difference really

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
EXDJ 30 December, 2019 19:47
Weren’t Sarries meant to have been roughly £650k over the cap each season for the past three seasons (16-17, 17-18 and 18-19)? And didn’t Williams join for the 17-18 season?

Also isn’t he meant to be on roughly £350k per year? He doesn’t feature on any of the lists of highest paid Prem players which start around £400k+

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
Duncan96 30 December, 2019 22:07
Quote:
EXDJ
Weren’t Sarries meant to have been roughly £650k over the cap each season for the past three seasons (16-17, 17-18 and 18-19)? And didn’t Williams join for the 17-18 season?
Also isn’t he meant to be on roughly £350k per year? He doesn’t feature on any of the lists of highest paid Prem players which start around £400k+

In 16-17 Exeter beat us in the semi final. So the Salary Cap breach didn't make a difference to them that season. (The next season Liam Williams was largely injured).
I have not read that the figure is £650k, no. I have consistently read that the level of fine implies £600 (not that it may make any difference as you have to add on National Insurance) and Liam Williams came as a British Lions star with great competition from many clubs for his signature. I very much doubt he was on as little as £350k but as per the next point, no one knows for sure outside the club and salary cap manager. Maybe we have to add on a young player, maybe not. Doesn't make much difference.

Rugby players salaries aren't published btw. Certain websites might pluck them out of thin air but they don't know.

Re: EVERYTHING SALARYCAP RELATED
EXDJ 30 December, 2019 22:24
Quite a few different sources around eg:
[www.walesonline.co.uk]

[www.ruck.co.uk]

Of course there is no guarantee this is correct - you could call it informed speculation. If Williams is currently earning £600k (ie double what seems to be the accepted figure) then he is taking a whopping pay-cut to go back to Wales on £400k.

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