Closed petition Review the need for a statutory owners and Directors Test in Football

The recent news that Wigan athletic was being put into administration just weeks after new owners were approved by the EFL must lead to a review of the effectiveness of the owners and Directors test and it's use by the EFL

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At present, the test does not seem to be fit for purpose to protect football clubs in the future. If English football isn't able to act,the government should review the need for a statutory owners and Directors test to ensure it is fit for purpose and protects clubs in the future".

This petition is closed All petitions run for 6 months

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Government responded

This response was given on 10 August 2020

Football clubs have a unique social value; it is vital they are protected. The Government has committed to a fan-led review of governance that includes consideration of the Owners’ & Directors’ Test.

Read the response in full

Wigan Athletic is a club with a rich history and of great importance to the local community.

The Government is aware of the serious allegations that have surfaced around the club and we will continue to engage with the English Football League (EFL) to fully understand the facts of the case as they emerge.

The Government has committed to a fan-led review of football governance, which will include consideration of the Owners’ and Directors’ Test. We will engage with all the football authorities, including the EFL, during this review.

The Government is currently deciding on the scope and structure of the review but can confirm that engagement with fan groups will be central to the review process. It is vital that fans’ perspectives and interests are at the heart of the review.

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

Other parliamentary business

Share your views on the importance of football clubs

The Petitions Committee would like to hear your views on why football clubs are important, and who you think should be responsible for ensuring they survive the Covid-19 pandemic.

Share your views by completing this anonymous survey:

The survey will close at 9am on Monday 2 November.

What you told us about the importance of football clubs

Thanks to everyone who contributed to the Petitions Committee's work on this issue by completing our survey on the importance of football clubs to fans and their local communities.

A summary of the over-13,000 responses we received can be viewed here:

Don't forget to tune in to the debate on this petition at 4.30pm this Monday 9 November, which you can watch live here:

Follow the Committee on Twitter for real-time updates on its work on this issue: You can join the discussion using hashtag #FootballFansDebate.

MPs to debate the future of football governance

MPs will debate the future of football governance this Wednesday 25 November in Westminster Hall.

This will be a general debate. General debates allow MPs to debate important issues, however they do not end in a vote nor can they change the law.

The debate will start at 2.30pm and last for 90 minutes.

Watch here this Wednesday:

Find out more about how Parliamentary debates work:

MPs question the Government on the final report of its 'fan-led' review of football governance

On Thursday 25 November, MPs questioned Nigel Huddleston MP, Minister for Sport, Tourism, Heritage and Civil Society, on the final report of the Government's 'Independent Fan-led Review of Football Governance'. This followed an Urgent Question by Jo Stevens MP.

Read MPs' questions and the Minister's responses:
Read the final report:

In his response, the Minister confirmed that the Government would formally respond to the independent report "in the new year". He also confirmed the Government "endorse in principle" the report's central recommendation of a "strong, independent regulator" for football.

The report's recommendations include the recommendation that new owners’ and directors’ tests should be established to ensure that "only good custodians and qualified directors can run these vital assets".

When asked about this recommendation, the Minister acknowledged that "the current owners and directors test has not fulfilled all of its expectations".

The Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Nadine Dorries MP, also made a statement to the House on this matter.

Read the Secretary of State's statement:

###What are Urgent Questions?
If an urgent or important matter arises which an MP believes requires an immediate answer from a government minister, they may apply to ask an urgent question.

The relevant Government Minister has to come to the Chamber to explain what the Government is doing on the issue raised. The Minister will then usually take questions on the subject from MPs.

MPs debate governance and financial sustainability of football clubs in England

On Monday 7 November MPs debated governance and financial sustainability of football clubs in England. The debate was led by Shabana Mahmood MP.

What are Adjournment debates?

Adjournment debates give a backbench MP the opportunity to raise an issue and receive a response from a government minister. They do not end in a vote.

Find out more about Adjournment debates.

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