Should Leicester fans be content with the current ownership model?

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Brown Nose

Well-Known Member
Well yes, you will answer, obviously. King Power have been the custodians of Leicester City for more than a decade now. For the first few years, they poured money in rather haphazardly. In 2014, they hit the jackpot - the Premier League (PL). Vichai wrote off more than £100m turning loans into equity and we were off on a wonderful journey.

Over the last seven seasons, they have overseen us as we have invested mainly prudently and occasionally badly. We've tried and failed to live within our means because we've been ambitious to challenge the bigger boys. We are challenging those bigger boys so in that sense overreaching has worked. In 2016, we achieved an extraordinary thing. For the last two seasons, we've found a manager and playing group that have made us consistently be able to compete. It's a fabulous time to be a City fan.

But the reality is that what we're doing is totally unsustainable. Our debts are accruing at relentless rates. Once the accounts are tallied up for the end of this season, those debts could well be pushing a quarter of a billion pounds. And we want to spend potentially another fortune on the stadium and surrounding areas.

Our only realistic hope is that Top turns these massive debts we owe (largely to King Power) into equity too. There is no way we can ever pay them off. There is no way we can afford a stadium expansion. It's utter madness to even consider it. We spend more on our player salaries than we make in total revenue in every aspect of the club. If we make the Champions League, we might be able to afford to sign some players and sell one only of our main playing assets. If we don't make the Champions League, surely our market will be to sell and only sign free transfers and loans.

With the focus on the European Super League (ESL) attention has been drawn towards the ownership models of our clubs. You can't really be a PL owner and not be a billionaire. It's a very, very, rich persons play thing these days. Once a billionaire has control of your club, you are completely at their mercy. They are either good people or not. We got lucky, we got good* billionaires. Some of our competitors got unlucky. They got bad billionaires.

*when I say good, I'm referring to their role in leading Leicester City. There are some very serious and undeniably awful claims about their exploitative role in Thailand.

We also got very lucky that we had Top when Vichai died. If Leicester City was only Vichai's play thing, goodness only knows where we'd be right now. Southampton lost a billionaire to death and have been drifting now for years, for sale and surviving on selling assets. But we had Top. Top was alongside his father and could pick up the reigns and the commitment. So there was some continuity for us and we could continue almost as if nothing had happened.

But what happened on that fateful night in 2018 shows just how fickle things can be. King Power are a vulnerable company, at the whim of the Thai regime and under constant threat from protesters and legal challenges. The pandemic will have hit them as hard as any business. What if Top cannot justify the cost of maintaining Leicester City to his shareholders? What if other members of his family understandably want the family to put the English football thing in the past? If Top cannot write off another massive set of loans to us, how do we manage this debt? What happens to us without King Power propping us up?

Make no mistake about it though, King Power have made a fortune out of their purchase of Leicester City. Their investment is now worth much more than everything that they've paid out. They've also got worldwide publicity and advertising that money couldn't really buy them. It's been a phenomenal business success.

However, the ESL has brought on a government enquiry which will look into the ownership of football clubs. There are new protests going on against several billionaire owners. And that doesn't even include the dramas at clubs like Newcastle.

All this places a spotlight on clubs like ours. Clubs owned by billionaires who could do anything with 'their' club. Is it really okay that we just cross our fingers and hope that Top retains his interest and his commitment? Is that really enough? We don't have the first idea about how King Power really feel. Top never does interviews. Neither does Susan Whelan or Jon Rudkin. There is a wall of silence from everybody at Leicester City with the exception of the manager. And he isn't accountable or responsible for any of this.

We don't know what the King Power board are thinking about the debts the club is in. We don't know how they would react if a ESL took off and we were left behind. If the TV deals dry up, what happens to us? A fire sale of players?

All this talk about the ridiculous nature of football ownership in this country has made me wonder. We are so vulnerable. So dependent on one young man from the other side of the world. And it really shouldn't be this way. It is frankly absurd that our club is that vulnerable. It is less than 20 years ago that we experienced what it is really like when the money dries up. When the pain of going bust rips the heart out of the club and threatens its very existence.

A start for Leicester City would be more openness from King Power and senior executives at the club. Another good option would be a fans representative on the board of directors. An even better option would be for some element of the ownership of Leicester City to be split up a bit. Some dilution of the exposure to the whims of one man and one company would surely be welcome?

None of this is in any way a criticism of King Power and their essential role in our club developing over recent years. However, it just feels wrong to me that it is all dependent on Top signing cheques and staying committed. A major football club should have a lot more depth to it than that. The events of the last week have, yet again, proved this to be the case.
 

Matt_B

Moderator
Well yes, you will answer, obviously. King Power have been the custodians of Leicester City for more than a decade now. For the first few years, they poured money in rather haphazardly. In 2014, they hit the jackpot - the Premier League (PL). Vichai wrote off more than £100m turning loans into equity and we were off on a wonderful journey.

Over the last seven seasons, they have overseen us as we have invested mainly prudently and occasionally badly. We've tried and failed to live within our means because we've been ambitious to challenge the bigger boys. We are challenging those bigger boys so in that sense overreaching has worked. In 2016, we achieved an extraordinary thing. For the last two seasons, we've found a manager and playing group that have made us consistently be able to compete. It's a fabulous time to be a City fan.

But the reality is that what we're doing is totally unsustainable. Our debts are accruing at relentless rates. Once the accounts are tallied up for the end of this season, those debts could well be pushing a quarter of a billion pounds. And we want to spend potentially another fortune on the stadium and surrounding areas.

Our only realistic hope is that Top turns these massive debts we owe (largely to King Power) into equity too. There is no way we can ever pay them off. There is no way we can afford a stadium expansion. It's utter madness to even consider it. We spend more on our player salaries than we make in total revenue in every aspect of the club. If we make the Champions League, we might be able to afford to sign some players and sell one only of our main playing assets. If we don't make the Champions League, surely our market will be to sell and only sign free transfers and loans.

With the focus on the European Super League (ESL) attention has been drawn towards the ownership models of our clubs. You can't really be a PL owner and not be a billionaire. It's a very, very, rich persons play thing these days. Once a billionaire has control of your club, you are completely at their mercy. They are either good people or not. We got lucky, we got good* billionaires. Some of our competitors got unlucky. They got bad billionaires.

*when I say good, I'm referring to their role in leading Leicester City. There are some very serious and undeniably awful claims about their exploitative role in Thailand.

We also got very lucky that we had Top when Vichai died. If Leicester City was only Vichai's play thing, goodness only knows where we'd be right now. Southampton lost a billionaire to death and have been drifting now for years, for sale and surviving on selling assets. But we had Top. Top was alongside his father and could pick up the reigns and the commitment. So there was some continuity for us and we could continue almost as if nothing had happened.

But what happened on that fateful night in 2018 shows just how fickle things can be. King Power are a vulnerable company, at the whim of the Thai regime and under constant threat from protesters and legal challenges. The pandemic will have hit them as hard as any business. What if Top cannot justify the cost of maintaining Leicester City to his shareholders? What if other members of his family understandably want the family to put the English football thing in the past? If Top cannot write off another massive set of loans to us, how do we manage this debt? What happens to us without King Power propping us up?

Make no mistake about it though, King Power have made a fortune out of their purchase of Leicester City. Their investment is now worth much more than everything that they've paid out. They've also got worldwide publicity and advertising that money couldn't really buy them. It's been a phenomenal business success.

However, the ESL has brought on a government enquiry which will look into the ownership of football clubs. There are new protests going on against several billionaire owners. And that doesn't even include the dramas at clubs like Newcastle.

All this places a spotlight on clubs like ours. Clubs owned by billionaires who could do anything with 'their' club. Is it really okay that we just cross our fingers and hope that Top retains his interest and his commitment? Is that really enough? We don't have the first idea about how King Power really feel. Top never does interviews. Neither does Susan Whelan or Jon Rudkin. There is a wall of silence from everybody at Leicester City with the exception of the manager. And he isn't accountable or responsible for any of this.

We don't know what the King Power board are thinking about the debts the club is in. We don't know how they would react if a ESL took off and we were left behind. If the TV deals dry up, what happens to us? A fire sale of players?

All this talk about the ridiculous nature of football ownership in this country has made me wonder. We are so vulnerable. So dependent on one young man from the other side of the world. And it really shouldn't be this way. It is frankly absurd that our club is that vulnerable. It is less than 20 years ago that we experienced what it is really like when the money dries up. When the pain of going bust rips the heart out of the club and threatens its very existence.

A start for Leicester City would be more openness from King Power and senior executives at the club. Another good option would be a fans representative on the board of directors. An even better option would be for some element of the ownership of Leicester City to be split up a bit. Some dilution of the exposure to the whims of one man and one company would surely be welcome?

None of this is in any way a criticism of King Power and their essential role in our club developing over recent years. However, it just feels wrong to me that it is all dependent on Top signing cheques and staying committed. A major football club should have a lot more depth to it than that. The events of the last week have, yet again, proved this to be the case.
Until the entire way football is run changes, we are in the best position out of many. If a more sustainable model is ever introduced or FFP is given actual clout, then I'd argue even better. The alternative would be to find a kind local owner happy to spend enough to keep us mid-Champ level, and no modern fans would be happy with that.
 

sparky79

Well-Known Member
things i think need to happen to save football.

- 51% rule introduced to dictate consistent controlling vote of fans group on boards.
- Players salaries tapered down over next 3 yrs to create more sustainable, non loss making entities
- Total wage bills capped as a % of real income. Possibly at a european level as part of FFP.
- Breakaway leagues looking to operate outside the governing body frameworks to be banned from local and european competition for 10yrs, players unable to play internationally.
- Ticket prices down and reintroduction of safe standing to allow cheaper areas of ground.
- Zero tolerance of youth poaching or illegal approaches to youth players. A fine equivalent to the average premier league squad player transfer value to be paid to the team whose player is poached or unsettled.
- Winter break.
- League Cup just for EFL OR moved to earlier in the season.
 

FOX Franks

Well-Known Member
It’ll never happen but I’d really like to see salaries capped across the premier league.
not FFP, which we’ve seen can be danced around. I mean a straight salary cap for all teams.
 

fitz

Well-Known Member
It’ll never happen but I’d really like to see salaries capped across the premier league.
not FFP, which we’ve seen can be danced around. I mean a straight salary cap for all teams.

I do agree with this....but can imagine many players having second jobs like Rooney was supposed to have at Derby. The ****s will get around it.
 

homer

Well-Known Member
things i think need to happen to save football.

- 51% rule introduced to dictate consistent controlling vote of fans group on boards.
- Players salaries tapered down over next 3 yrs to create more sustainable, non loss making entities
- Total wage bills capped as a % of real income. Possibly at a european level as part of FFP.
- Breakaway leagues looking to operate outside the governing body frameworks to be banned from local and european competition for 10yrs, players unable to play internationally.
- Ticket prices down and reintroduction of safe standing to allow cheaper areas of ground.
- Zero tolerance of youth poaching or illegal approaches to youth players. A fine equivalent to the average premier league squad player transfer value to be paid to the team whose player is poached or unsettled.
- Winter break.
- League Cup just for EFL OR moved to earlier in the season.

Apart from (possibly) safe standing, none of those will ever happen
 

fitz

Well-Known Member
As for racking up huge losses. That's business innit.....as long as covenants are met it's not a big worry for many businesses to operate that way. The covid seasons will also be an opportunity for big bath accounting as FFP will be out of the window for a period of time.
 

sparky79

Well-Known Member
Apart from (possibly) safe standing, none of those will ever happen
yeah, i doubt it. but they do need to or the game will break up in some way denting its popularity.
 

fitz

Well-Known Member
As for racking up huge losses. That's business innit.....as long as covenants are met it's not a big worry for many businesses to operate that way. The covid seasons will also be an opportunity for big bath accounting as FFP will be out of the window for a period of time.

Should add that I would prefer ownership to be fan led but can't ever imagine that happening. The league could impliment rules....but this would probably reduce the value of the league.

Government would be unlikely to be able to impliment anything as it's perfectly ok for businesses in general to operate at a loss and ownership doesn't have to be shared there either.
 

pork pie fox

Well-Known Member
I’ve gone long past worrying about this sort of stuff, in the sense that there’s very little that can be done. The days of buckets being passed round to save a club from administration are long gone, due to the sums involved. Sadly, Boc will never again get to save us, I suspect.
 

fitz

Well-Known Member
I’ve gone long past worrying about this sort of stuff, in the sense that there’s very little that can be done. The days of buckets being passed round to save a club from administration are long gone, due to the sums involved. Sadly, Boc will never again get to save us, I suspect.

Do the foxes trust still have the emergency cash?
 

The Old Fox

Well-Known Member
It’ll never happen but I’d really like to see salaries capped across the premier league.
not FFP, which we’ve seen can be danced around. I mean a straight salary cap for all teams.
Why should footballers be different to everyone else? There is no profession in which there is a pay cap. The problem is with wealthy owners covering clubs' over spend. Owners should be allowed to put in money for structural improvements - e.g. our new training ground, improving/replacing grounds but, player purchase and salaries should come from club earnings.
 

Volpone

Well-Known Member
Well yes, you will answer, obviously. King Power have been the custodians of Leicester City for more than a decade now. For the first few years, they poured money in rather haphazardly. In 2014, they hit the jackpot - the Premier League (PL). Vichai wrote off more than £100m turning loans into equity and we were off on a wonderful journey.

Over the last seven seasons, they have overseen us as we have invested mainly prudently and occasionally badly. We've tried and failed to live within our means because we've been ambitious to challenge the bigger boys. We are challenging those bigger boys so in that sense overreaching has worked. In 2016, we achieved an extraordinary thing. For the last two seasons, we've found a manager and playing group that have made us consistently be able to compete. It's a fabulous time to be a City fan.

But the reality is that what we're doing is totally unsustainable. Our debts are accruing at relentless rates. Once the accounts are tallied up for the end of this season, those debts could well be pushing a quarter of a billion pounds. And we want to spend potentially another fortune on the stadium and surrounding areas.

Our only realistic hope is that Top turns these massive debts we owe (largely to King Power) into equity too. There is no way we can ever pay them off. There is no way we can afford a stadium expansion. It's utter madness to even consider it. We spend more on our player salaries than we make in total revenue in every aspect of the club. If we make the Champions League, we might be able to afford to sign some players and sell one only of our main playing assets. If we don't make the Champions League, surely our market will be to sell and only sign free transfers and loans.

With the focus on the European Super League (ESL) attention has been drawn towards the ownership models of our clubs. You can't really be a PL owner and not be a billionaire. It's a very, very, rich persons play thing these days. Once a billionaire has control of your club, you are completely at their mercy. They are either good people or not. We got lucky, we got good* billionaires. Some of our competitors got unlucky. They got bad billionaires.

*when I say good, I'm referring to their role in leading Leicester City. There are some very serious and undeniably awful claims about their exploitative role in Thailand.

We also got very lucky that we had Top when Vichai died. If Leicester City was only Vichai's play thing, goodness only knows where we'd be right now. Southampton lost a billionaire to death and have been drifting now for years, for sale and surviving on selling assets. But we had Top. Top was alongside his father and could pick up the reigns and the commitment. So there was some continuity for us and we could continue almost as if nothing had happened.

But what happened on that fateful night in 2018 shows just how fickle things can be. King Power are a vulnerable company, at the whim of the Thai regime and under constant threat from protesters and legal challenges. The pandemic will have hit them as hard as any business. What if Top cannot justify the cost of maintaining Leicester City to his shareholders? What if other members of his family understandably want the family to put the English football thing in the past? If Top cannot write off another massive set of loans to us, how do we manage this debt? What happens to us without King Power propping us up?

Make no mistake about it though, King Power have made a fortune out of their purchase of Leicester City. Their investment is now worth much more than everything that they've paid out. They've also got worldwide publicity and advertising that money couldn't really buy them. It's been a phenomenal business success.

However, the ESL has brought on a government enquiry which will look into the ownership of football clubs. There are new protests going on against several billionaire owners. And that doesn't even include the dramas at clubs like Newcastle.

All this places a spotlight on clubs like ours. Clubs owned by billionaires who could do anything with 'their' club. Is it really okay that we just cross our fingers and hope that Top retains his interest and his commitment? Is that really enough? We don't have the first idea about how King Power really feel. Top never does interviews. Neither does Susan Whelan or Jon Rudkin. There is a wall of silence from everybody at Leicester City with the exception of the manager. And he isn't accountable or responsible for any of this.

We don't know what the King Power board are thinking about the debts the club is in. We don't know how they would react if a ESL took off and we were left behind. If the TV deals dry up, what happens to us? A fire sale of players?

All this talk about the ridiculous nature of football ownership in this country has made me wonder. We are so vulnerable. So dependent on one young man from the other side of the world. And it really shouldn't be this way. It is frankly absurd that our club is that vulnerable. It is less than 20 years ago that we experienced what it is really like when the money dries up. When the pain of going bust rips the heart out of the club and threatens its very existence.

A start for Leicester City would be more openness from King Power and senior executives at the club. Another good option would be a fans representative on the board of directors. An even better option would be for some element of the ownership of Leicester City to be split up a bit. Some dilution of the exposure to the whims of one man and one company would surely be welcome?

None of this is in any way a criticism of King Power and their essential role in our club developing over recent years. However, it just feels wrong to me that it is all dependent on Top signing cheques and staying committed. A major football club should have a lot more depth to it than that. The events of the last week have, yet again, proved this to be the case.
That's an extremely eloquent and well presented article BN.
Why don't you apply for a job with the Athletic? They are advertising for people like you to write about their club.
In response to your post, all I can say is thank our lucky stars that Top is a committed fan, just like ourselves.
 

Payne74

Well-Known Member
I would think the long term plan would be to use the new training facilities to improve the youth set up so we are not so reliant on buying players.
Perhaps the plan was always to spend big money to get Leicester to a certain level, world class training facility, stadium expansion, CL football.
Leicester grow by selling a player for huge amounts then replacing cheaper but better, Maguire and Chilwell the latest examples sold for £130 million with JJ and Soyuncu costing £23 million this approach is more than sustainable.
 

FOX Franks

Well-Known Member
Why should footballers be different to everyone else? There is no profession in which there is a pay cap. The problem is with wealthy owners covering clubs' over spend. Owners should be allowed to put in money for structural improvements - e.g. our new training ground, improving/replacing grounds but, player purchase and salaries should come from club earnings.
Of course you’re correct, but treating football like any other profession is crazy in my opinion.
There is a spend cap in F1, NFL and various other sports. The MLS has a restriction on “star players”.
Should we not be comparing football to other sports, not other industries?
 

Brown Nose

Well-Known Member
The events of today have made me read back the responses to this thread.

I cannot help but conclude that there is no appetite among City fans to challenge the status quo at the club.

Leicester City is owned by someone who has done a lot of good for the club. However, he shouldn't be able to do whatever he wants to do with our club. It just isn't right that such power and responsibility sits with him and him alone. We know nothing much about him or his plans because all we see are the occasional press releases/programme notes which are clearly neither penned by him or probably even seen by him.

To all intents and purposes, our club is faceless. All we do is guess and hope.

Before King Power, our club was owned by an absolute shyster in Mandaric, who spoke a lot but it was bullshit. He just busied himself only with lining his own pockets. Prior to that, we were so badly run that we almost went out of business altogether. So we're no strangers to being rinsed by owners.

I disagree with the way football clubs can be owned and run nowadays. It's wrong. It's wrong at Leicester and it's wrong at Manchester Utd. I support change and would like to see change at all clubs owned like the big six and us.

Being a billionaires plaything isn't right.
 

The Old Fox

Well-Known Member
I would have a LOT more sympathy with those poor hard done by Manchester United fans, were they to be protesting the latest £100, 000,000 signing.

It seems to me, that an awfully large number of fans want owners who are simply cash machines: when you sup with the Devil, bring a long spoon.
 

big_mac4824

Well-Known Member
It’ll never happen but I’d really like to see salaries capped across the premier league.
not FFP, which we’ve seen can be danced around. I mean a straight salary cap for all teams.
Salary caps must be introduced across Europe for it to work
 
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