Neville Criticizes Premier League Over Everton's 10-Point Deduction
|Sky Sports pundits Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher react during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and Tottenham Hotspur at Selhurst Park on October 27, 2023 in London, England.(Image-Getty)
Former England defender Gary Neville criticized the "lawless" state of the Premier League in his podcast, specifically addressing Everton's recent 10-point deduction for breaching profitability and sustainability rules (PSR). The unprecedented deduction, a consequence of financial issues during the 2020-21 season, marked Everton as the first Premier League club to face such a penalty.
Neville, expressing dismay on his podcast "Stick to Football," stated, "Everton's trust and faith (in the Premier League) has gone completely." He condemned what he perceived as greed and selfishness, asserting that the Premier League has become a "defunct organization" with 20 clubs voting in their self-interest. Neville argued that this situation was a long-anticipated outcome of systemic issues within the league.
The immediate impact of the points deduction saw Everton plummet from 14th in the standings to the relegation zone with four points, narrowly above bottom side Burnley on goal difference. Everton's financial troubles were highlighted by losses of nearly £372 million over three years, exceeding the £250 million limit set by the league for that period.
Neville also drew attention to the stark contrast in fines, pointing out that Champions Manchester City faces over 100 charges of breaking financial rules while the Super League clubs, which attempted to disrupt European football, received a total fine of £22 million, a fraction of their proposed punishment.
The criticism of Everton's deduction extended beyond Neville, with Labour MP Ian Byrne tabling a motion in parliament condemning the penalty and advocating for the immediate establishment of an independent football regulator. Despite the setback, Everton's director of football, Kevin Thelwell, expressed the club's determination to use the penalty as "additional fuel" for the remainder of the season.