Sir Jim Ratcliffe ‘vehemently against’ wage ‘anchoring’ that could hamper Man Utd transfer plans

Will Ford
Man Utd co-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe
Sir Jim Ratcliffe completed a deal to buy 27.7 per cent of the club in February.

Manchester United co-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe is reportedly ‘vehemently against’ a proposal that would see wages ‘anchored’ to the team that finishes bottom of the Premier League.

The proposed rule change, which is set to be high on the agenda when Premier League clubs convene in London on Monday, would see the amount of money any club can invest in their squads linked to the amount made through TV money and commercial deals by the team that finishes bottom of the table.

Man Utd unable to reap rewards of revenue

Those in favour of ‘anchoring’ believe it would reduce the growing disparity between the Premier league and the Championship, and feel it would limit the impact of increases in revenues for those involved in the expanded Champions League.

But Ratcliffe and INEOS – who took a 27.7 per cent stake in United earlier this year – are among those who believe they’re being unfairly penalised, as they wouldn’t be able to reap the rewards of their revenue, which reached a record £648.4m last year, when it comes to improving their squad.

The Athletic claim that ‘when the idea was first suggested last year, the top-to-bottom multiple its backers had in mind was 4.5 but, with several clubs strongly opposed to the cap, the league is now suggesting a looser multiple of five.’

The cap would have been £518m, five times the £103.6m that Southampton earned, if anchoring was in effect last season, which would have been breached by Chelsea, who spent more than that on wages, amortised transfer fees and payments to agents.

A growing number of clubs opposed

United and Ratcliffe are ‘vehemently against’ the proposal according to the Daily Mail, but they’re not alone, with ‘a growing number of Premier League clubs strongly opposed’ to the idea.

The report claims ‘the matter will be high on the agenda on Monday and a vote may be taken, should clubs indicate that there is a likelihood of a resolution, adding that ‘any new rules are likely to come into force from 2025-26, with the upcoming season used as a “shadow” where clubs could see how they would have fared.’

Clubs have already agreed to sign up to new protocols to replace the existing Profit and Sustainability Rules (PSR) that have seen both Everton and Nottingham Forest hit with points deductions this season.

One of the proposals to replace those FFP rules is a ‘luxury tax’, where those clubs who overspend will have a financial punishment which would increase the more they splash the cash.