‘Bizarre’ – Brighton CEO Paul Barber makes telling FFP point after criticism from Newcastle United fans

Brighton CEO Paul Barber says calls for clubs to be able to lose more money is “bizarre” amid growing disgruntlement with financial fair play rules.
Brighton's CEO Paul BarberBrighton's CEO Paul Barber
Brighton's CEO Paul Barber

Under the Premier League's profit and sustainability rules, clubs are allowed to lose a maximum of £105 million over three seasons – something Everton, and possibly Nottingham Forest, have fallen afoul of.

But in light of Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund having an 80% stake in Newcastle United, making them one of the richest football owners on the planet, some fans feel FFP rules should be tweaked so they can splash the cash even more.

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However, Albion deputy chairman Barber says it is strange to be in favour of businesses losing more money and more should be done to promote clubs being sustainable.

He said on talkSPORT: “Only in football would we argue about wanting to lose more money, that is just a bizarre concept and not one that any of us should sign up to. We should be looking at rules that limit our losses, make our clubs more sustainable, and ensure that we live within our means as best we can.

"It is wrong to be talking about wanting to lose more money, that is just not a sustainable proposition for any business and a football club should be no different in that concept. I think most owners would like to lose less money and I think if you look further down the league and the pyramid, I know (EFL chairman) Rick Parry was in the studio talking about some of the issues in the EFL [English Football League]. We have got to find ways of making the entire pyramid more sustainable.

"We have got to make sure football clubs are part of their communities for generations to come. We know how important to people’s lives and the only way we are going to stay relevant and important in people’s lives is if we stay afloat and we won’t stay afloat if we keep increasing and pushing each other to lose more money.”

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Earlier this month, Magpies CEO Darren Eales admitted the club could be forced to sell some of their biggest names to comply with FFP regulations after spending more than £400 million following the takeover in October 2021.

Incidentally, Manchester City were charged by the Premier League with 115 alleged breaches of financial regulations in February 2023 after opening an investigation in 2018.