Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish claims Crouch review’s regulator plans would be ‘huge act of self harm’

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 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Steve Parish has warned that plans to introduce an independent regulator to the English game risk having a negative impact on the sport.

Tracey Crouch’s fan-led review was published earlier this week, and called for parliament to support the creation of a new regulatory body, among a number of other recommendations.

Gary Neville has been one of those outspoken in his support for the proposals, which would see a regulator deal with the game’s finances, club ownership and corporate governance.

The move would weaken the powers of the Premier League and other leagues, and the Football Association to govern the game, and it is hoped would prevent teams attempting to set up breakaway leagues such as the European Super League.

Crystal Palace chairman Parish is insistent that Crouch’s proposals are not the way to improve the situation.

“Unfortunately, I think these solutions are in grave danger of huge, unintended consequences that could make the game a lot worse in the long run,” Parish said.

“We are the envy of the world, make no mistake. We emerged from the COVID crisis, the English game, as the most healthy game in the world, without a doubt.

“Everybody looks on us, across Europe particularly, somewhat comedically, thinking we are about to create a huge act of self harm.”

One of the other recommendations was to give fans of clubs a veto over certain issues, and the creation of shadow boards made up of supporters.

Crouch said it was “heartbreaking” to hear from fans who had been “betrayed” by owners in the past and wanted to give them increased power, but Parish is resistant to the change.

“I fear for the government somewhat. All football fans tend to want different things,” said Parish.

“There are a lot of sledgehammers to crack nuts in this report.”

Additional reporting by Reuters.

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