Mansfield Town boss Nigel Clough backs fans’ ideas for future of English football

Mansfield Town boss Nigel Club said he would welcome a new independent regulatory body for football in this country.

Nigel Clough - welcomes idea for independent governance of English football.
Nigel Clough - welcomes idea for independent governance of English football.

And he called on Premier League clubs to treat their supporters better.

With wages and ticket prices at the top always rising but not enough of that money filtering down to help lower leagues, the government has 'endorsed the idea in principle' but the Premier League is inevitably opposed to it.

The independent idea is the primary recommendation of a fan-led review of football governance, which has been welcomed by Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries, who said the government will work on a 'substantive response' to be presented next spring as English football lurches from crisis to crisis.

“I think football in general needs to be independently regulated,” agreed Clough

“One or two clubs need looking at closer individually, but I think overall we need to look at the bigger picture.

“First of all we need to see if fans are getting value for money and treated appropriately.

“All I keep hearing from Premier League clubs and players is that the fans are this or the fans are that, nothing more.

“But we value our fans here and I think that is reflected in the way the club treats them. Look at the ticket offers they've done for them over Christmas and things like that.

“There should be more of that done for supporters throughout the country.”

On who would be in charge of a regulatory body, he said: “It needs someone with football experience as well as fan experience. You have to look at it from all different angles.

“You have to appreciate what it's like to run a football club and appreciate what's it like to stand on the terraces.

"It may be difficult for someone to fill that sort of role.”

Clough added: “As much as the vast majority of football seems to come from the TV deals at the moment, that's still fans – they're watching it at home or watching it around the world.

“But never forget without those actually going onto the terraces or into the stands on a Saturday afternoon, as we saw during the pandemic, football is not the same.”