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Sep 12, 2008

Football regulations are 'inadequate' - Triesman

Football Association chairman Lord Triesman has branded regulations governing football finance as ''inadequate'' and has voiced concern at the influx of billionaire club owners into the English game.

Triesman believes that clubs looking for short-term success and financial gain should no longer be allowed to take charge, adding his voice to the growing number of dissenters unhappy about Manchester City's elevation to become the world's richest club.

''We all want to feel our clubs are in the best hands. Fans want to know their loyalty and hard-earned money are not taken for granted,'' he wrote in the Daily Telegraph.

''We want those who run our clubs to do so in the long-term interests of their financial health and sporting success rather than immediate return on investment.

''Football has a tier of regulation beyond company law or stock market regulation.

''However, observing the pace and direction of change and its impact on competitiveness, I am not sure that the existing framework is adequate.''

Triesman's comments come a day after culture secretary Andy Burnham MP called on the FA to tighten its regulations to prevent the game ''losing touch with its core support''.

The FA chief agrees with the thrust of Burnham's argument and believes it is vital clubs maintain an ''English flavour'', rather than simply pluck talent from around the globe.

''The distinction is between those who invest and respect the values of clubs, and those who are just shopping,'' he said.

''It is hard to believe that an owner who thinks it is all right to buy a 'world first XI' has grasped this fundamental point.''

He said: ''The FA must make good our responsibility for coaching to improve the quality of home-grown youngsters. Clubs share this responsibility.

''The best club owners get it. They have bought into something special and don't want to destroy it. They do not want a game simply played by foreigners, however superb, that just happens to be played in England.''

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