Dutch football clubs punished with point deductions
When the new football season opens later this year, Dutch professional football clubs won’t just be judged on their sporting prowess, but also on their financial mismanagement. That’s why at least seven clubs in the Premier League and First Division are being punished with point deductions and will begin the new season in arrears.
The biggest loser is Maastricht’s First Division MVV club: it has had seven points deducted by the Royal Netherlands Football Association KNVB. The KNVB says the Limburgers have now failed twice to stick to a plan to render them financially healthy. They did not deliver their budget on time. They lost another point because they failed to meet the compulsory premium for the players’ fund. And they lost a final three points because they failed to meet employee salary requirements on time.
“Very harsh,” said Paul Rinkens, MVV’s future new chairman, about the point deductions. “But the previous MVV board didn’t stick to the agreement. The facts are clear.” Although the club had recently reached an agreement with 96 percent of its creditors, this came too late to prevent the deductions.
Fellow First Division club AGOW lost six points for failing to pay fees for players to other clubs. Almere City FC and Veendam lost three points, Fortuna Sittard two and FC Dordrecht one. Breda’s Premier League team NAC has announced that it will start the new season with a one-point loss.
Although this is the first time that the KNVB has penalised clubs with such deductions, it has been considering sanctions to discourage financial mismanagement for some time. In particular, a number of clubs in the First Division are dealing with budget deficits and can almost not meet their financial obligations. And, just this summer, the Premier League’s Willem II and Roda JC only narrowly managed to avoid bankruptcy.
© Radio Netherlands Worldwide