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Rewind to Boxing Day 1963

Barclays Premier League
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By ESPN Staff

Whelan: Punish debt-ridden Premier League clubs

Wigan owner Dave Whelan has called for measures to limit clubs' debt and punish those who spend way beyond their means.

Last week Football Association chairman Lord Triesman warned of the £3billion debt timebomb that could explode in English clubs' faces as economies around the world continue to struggle.

UEFA, and in particular president Michel Platini, have expressed similar concerns about the financial figures in the Premier League.

Suggestions of a salary cap have resurfaced recently but Whelan told BBC Radio Five Live's Sportsweek programme he believes rules should be introduced to limit debt.

"UEFA are going to say things about debt and actually, I agree with them,'' he said.

"They are talking about salary caps again now but what we should be doing is limiting the amount of debt that each club can have.

"Let's say 25 or 30% of your total income and you can't have any more debt on your balance sheet than that. If you do, you are breaking the rules and you get points deducted or whatever.''

Reading chairman John Madejski agreed with Whelan's suggestion and said: "The Premier League in the last few years has been dominated by incredibly wealthy people from around the globe, it is big boys' toys basically.''

He added: "There is passion and I think people do leave their brains behind in the boardroom sometimes especially when they are spending other people's money buying players.''

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