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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Dec 16, 2006

Players will scoop new TV cash - Allardyce

Bolton boss Sam Allardyce believes players will be the main beneficiaries of the extra television revenue which comes on stream from the start of next season.

Allardyce can already sense what will unfold next summer when it comes to signing new players and keeping those already at the club as his side prepare to face Aston Villa this evening.

'The pressure this season to stay in the Premiership is greater than in previous seasons,' said Allardyce.

'The new (television) deal means we will receive 60 or 70% more than we are receiving now.

'At the start of the season there were probably 14 clubs out of 20 who made it a priority to hit that 40-points total.

'That's purely and simply because of the size of the television revenue that will come to the football club.

'We could be looking at a pot of £40million, but it will all go down the plughole because it will mostly go to the players.

'Those players coming in, and those signing new contracts, will increase their demands by at least 30-40%, if not 50 or 60%.

'That's the biggest problem we are going to face because a player on £15,000 per week will want £25,000 per week; those on £25,000 will want £35,000, and so on.

'So we won't be better off financially. We will have to give the money to them to keep them and maintain our standards.

'It will be a hard pill to swallow, but it will be a necessity to continue to play in the Premiership and compete in the top 10 as we want to do.'

Following last week's 4-0 victory over West Ham, Allardyce feels his players cannot afford to let their standards drop against Villa.

However, he knows with Martin O'Neill leading Villa's revival this season, the task of ending a six-game winless run at Villa Park will be an arduous one.

'Martin is a manager of huge talent and experience,' assessed Allardyce.

'He has known for a long time how to move into a football club, to reorganise it, assess players' talents as quickly as possible and mould the team into one that becomes difficult to beat.

'With Villa, he has barely touched the transfer market. He has given all the players a very good chance to show what they can do.

'He will probably move into the market in January or next summer to make them even bigger and better than they are now.

'But Martin is doing exactly what I expected him to do, which is a fantastic job, which means we'll have a very difficult game on our hands.'

El-Hadji Diouf serves a one-game ban and Quinton Fortune is out with an Achilles injury, but Tal Ben Haim returns after completing a suspension.