Reading FC owner Anton Zingarevich abstains from Premier League vote

Published: 8 Feb 2013 12:300 comments

READING FC owner Anton Zingarevich abstained from a vote to bring tougher spending controls to the Premier League.

No vote: Reading FC owner Anton Zingarevich, left, with chairman Sir John Madejski.

Zingarevich, the son of a Russian billionaire, did not register a vote in yesterday's ballot aimed at altering the way top-flight clubs conduct their financial business.

The proposals aim to introduce financial fair play and also restrict player salary increases.

League rules require a two-thirds majority to push through rule changes, meaning 14 Premier League clubs had to vote in favour.

However, the decision of 30-year-old Zingarevich to abstain meant only 13 votes were required to reach a majority. The final count was 13 clubs in favour to six against.

Manchester City, Ascot Villa, Fulham, West Bromwich Albion, Swansea City and Southampton were the six clubs who voted against.

New plans include capping the amount clubs can spend on players' wages and also limiting losses to £105 million over a three year period. Clubs who break the rules could face points deductions.

The thrust behind the rule change is to curb wage inflation and avoid the sort of spiralling debt that has crippled clubs like Portsmouth in recent years.

Now, clubs with a annual wage bill greater than £52 million will be able to increase their spending by only £4 million the following season, £8 million in the second season and £12 million the third.

However, the restrictions do not apply to additional revenue generated by commercial or match-day income.

There will be no restrictions on the amount clubs can spend on infrastructure and youth development either.

Reading could be set to boost profits in that area, with the club due to re-submit a planning application to increase the capacity of the Madejski Stadium from 24,000 to 38,000.

Building work would only begin if Reading remain in the Premier League, with Brian McDermott's men currently one place above the relegation zone thanks to an excellent run since Christmas.

++ READING FC'S squad will be spending four days in Dubai next week on a warm-weather training camp ahead of their FA Cup fifth round tie at Manchester United on February 18.

Brian McDermott's men will jet out to Dubai on Monday and return on Thursday. They base themselves at Al-Wasl Football Club. ++

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