QPR facing heavy fine after challenge to EFL's financial fair play rules fails
Queens Park Rangers are facing a multi-million pound fine after failing with a challenge to the English Football League's financial fair play (FFP) rules.
The Championship side posted a loss of £9.7 million in the 2013-14 season, during which they earned promotion to the Premier League.
The West London team were under Harry Redknapp's management and the chairmanship of Tony Fernandes at the time.
QPR's accounts showed a £60m income injection from the club owners, classed as an "exceptional item," which was to write off loans. The Football League, since rebranded as the English Football League, is reported to have taken issue with that injection of cash and considered the real loss figure to be £69.7m.
Such a sum would have left QPR liable for a huge FFP fine, and the club's failure to have EFL rules on the matter ruled unlawful now looks set to cost them a sum that Press Association Sport reports could run into tens of millions.
The EFL said: "An arbitral panel has dismissed Queens Park Rangers' claim that the English Football League's 2012 financial fair play rules were unlawful under competition law, and also found that the fine levied by the EFL on the club was not disproportionate.
"The decision of the three-man panel was released to the parties on Oct. 19. QPR has indicated that it intends to appeal the decision.''
QPR were promoted via the playoffs in May 2014, beating Derby 1-0 at Wembley through Bobby Zamora's late goal.
Twelve months previously they had been relegated from the Premier League, and their yo-yo progress persisted with relegation back to the Championship in 2015.
They have since remained in the second tier, currently sitting 17th in the table in their third consecutive season at that level.
It remains to be seen whether QPR are successful in their appeal, or how they might pay the FFP fine.
EFL chief executive Shaun Harvey said the league's action was justified.
Harvey said: "This decision vindicates the approach of the EFL board in defending this challenge. The board will continue to enforce our rules on clubs to protect the interests of those that do comply.
"The board understand the challenges that this decision could create for our valued, member clubs and will work with them, as and when the matter formally concludes.
"It has taken a long time to get to this outcome and I'd like to publicly thank all those individuals who have supported our approach."
QPR chief executive Lee Hoos said on the club's website: "We are understandably disappointed with the decision. We are currently examining our next steps, but we will be appealing."