WWW.RLFANS.COM • View topic - SL going to 12

Board index Championship London Broncos SL going to 12

Re: SL going to 12 Wed Nov 18, 2020 12:15 pm  

Deadcowboys1 wrote:
Deadcowboys1 Strong-running second rower
Strong-running second rower

Joined: Wed Dec 29, 2010 6:10 pm
Posts: 280
I suspect Jaybs that they are not the brightest lights on the Christmas tree.
Re: SL going to 12 Sun Nov 22, 2020 2:13 pm  
Dunkirk Spirit User avatar
Free-scoring winger
Free-scoring winger

Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:43 am
Posts: 1029
Location: Horbury, a small town in Wakefield
jaybs wrote:
I wonder if it was decided who the 12th Club would be, even before clubs were asked to apply, if your club met the qualifications? No shock that the remaining 11 clubs want to look after their own interests when the financial share out comes? some clubs crying poverty must have been getting some payment from Sky the number of matches at some clubs.

What frustrates me is how silent Our Club tends to be when it comes to the media, most Championship and 1st Division clubs tend to come up with some news for 'League Express' each week, except London? we must have a media person at the club?

Also in September there was a Fanfare for the announcement of The London Broncos Official Supporters Club, I joined the same evening, it as superb to read about the numbers joining, but it is now mid November and what has happened since, Nothing!

Apologies if this has already been shown on your forum,. This article by Mat Shaw, of the “League Express “ sums up how many fans feel about the application process for the 12th team. West

Rugby league has turned me into a cynic. Perhaps so much so that it has clouded my judgement and resulted in me becoming a serial over-thinker.

But I can’t help but think Bradford Bulls are on their way back to Super League.

It appears too obvious, reading the criteria published by Super League, that everything points in the direction of Bradford. In many ways, it’s too convenient for comfort too.

To apply for entry, one of the requirements is a top-six finish in the Championship during the last two seasons.

The top-six threshold, before you even consider who has finished where, is odd. The Championship operated a top-five play-off system last year and before that the top four entered the Qualifiers. A sixth-placed finished hasn’t achieved anything of note since 2014, when the Bulls were still in Super League.

However, the other five clubs in the running for Super League entry; Featherstone, Leigh, London, Toulouse and York, have all finished in the top fice during the past two years. Not the top six, the top five.

There is only one club that benefits from the top six criteria. That club is Bradford.

A coincidence? Perhaps. But that’s merely scratching the surface.

In the finance and sustainability section, one part of the criteria is that a club must not have an insolvency event to their name since January 1st 2018.

The Bulls’ liquidation was finalised in 2017.

Within the criteria, the largest part of the document is ‘Market Size and Commercial Appeal’. To an expansionist, commercial appeal would include the ability to expand to new areas, expose the competition to new markets and even secure new broadcast deals.

In this criteria, however, it’s based on social media figures, season ticket sales, attendances and merchandise revenue, all of which are understandable desires, of course.

Bradford have the most followers on Twitter and Facebook and they had the largest average attendance in the Championship last season other than, ironically, Toronto Wolfpack. There’s no questioning the Bulls come out on top when it comes to market size.

When it comes to potential growth? That’s up for debate. But it’s hard to see where potential is considered at all.

It has been stressed to the media that a great deal of the application criteria mirrors that of the much-revered licensing model last used in 2011. So the idea that criteria has been constructed to benefit any club would be off the mark.

There is one notable exception though. In 2011, clubs got a ‘tick’ if they weren’t within a 20-mile radius of any other club in Super League. London, York and Toulouse would have all ticked that box. That, however, is no longer a requirement.

Then Robert Elstone addressed the media and only added to the theory.

“One of the key criteria of evaluation will be fanbase,” he said.

“Both in terms of levels of engagement through social media, through the community but more importantly how clubs convert into a live audience, season ticket base and match tickets. Looking very carefully at what clubs will bring in those areas will be a big part of the evaluation.”

It’s a not-so-subtle endorsement for the Bulls.

Subsequently, he was asked about Toulouse Olympique, who bring a completely contrasting bid to the Bulls in terms of geographical location and potential benefits.

When asked if the threat of travel restrictions would work against Toulouse he said: “They probably should.”

Toulouse would have already been concerned about their chances if they’d read Super League’s ‘independent report’ into Toronto Wolfpack, which questioned the commercial benefits Super League had seen from the inclusion of Catalans.

When asked about just that, Elstone commented: “The evaluation would be similar to Toronto in that locally is it sustainable and successful, but more significantly is it a contributor to the economics of Super League and that would be around sponsors and broadcast revenues.”

Elstone would go on to say the competition had to do what was best for Sky and Betfred – Super League’s major sponsors, when it came to attracting subscribers and customers for their businesses.

You wonder whether Toulouse, or London for that matter, will even bother wasting their time.

Other strands of the criteria are questionable. Bradford have performed the weakest on the field of the six clubs in the last two years. Though promoted from League 1 in 2018, York City Knights went up as champions and all the other applicants finished above them in last year’s Championship.

Yet the Playing Performance section of the document is relatively short, with just four sub-sections. The first is a top-six finish, which Bradford have attained.

The second strand requires the CV of an applicant club’s head coach as well as other staff members. The career of the esteemed Bulls head coach John Kear stands out against his younger peers.

The third section is vaguer around plans for the 2021 squad if promoted, and the fourth is training facilities, with the Bulls operating at Tong High School which will pass all the requirements. Even where the Bulls have fallen short, they still look set to score well.

Super League are keen to give the impression that the selection process is transparent, so much so that they have published the criteria clubs will be judged on.

However, they aren’t so keen to provide clarity on the weighting of their criteria.

One line within the document reads: “The Panel will have absolute discretion in the weighting of the Assessment Criteria. For the avoidance of doubt, the Assessment Criteria do not carry equal weight.”

Elstone refused to answer when asked if he could shed light on the weighting. Instead, he said the question should be asked of the panel.

On Monday, I emailed the six panel members from the RFL and Super League asking if they could provide more clarity. Super League have declined to comment on their behalf.

The RFL replied by simply stating: “As per the published document, the Panel will have discretion in the weighting of the Assessment Criteria – which do not carry equal weight.”

Super League’s three representatives on the panel are Chris Anderson, Graham Odlin and Rhodri Jones. The latter, by the way, was a marketing executive for the Bulls between 2004 and 2005.

The trio are all a part of Super League’s executive board. It’s interesting to note that Elstone felt the need to be part of that infamous ‘independent report’ on Toronto, but would rather put more dispensable executives in for this job.

As part of Elstone’s team, they are all involved in drawing up the criteria. Super League were contacted to comment on that too. They declined. So much for transparency.

Thankfully, the RFL did confirm that all the panel members, from both the RFL and Super League, had been involved in the making of the criteria.

“The Application Process and Criteria document, and criteria therein, were drawn up jointly between SLE and the RFL, with approval from the Independent Chair, Lord Caine – building on experience from the licensing process that has previously determined Super League membership, whilst also allowing for the use information already provided to the RFL through the Return on Investment process that has been introduced for Championship and League 1 clubs in recent years.”

The governing body’s involvement in the selection process is hardly innocent either, given they are the leaseholders of Odsal Stadium.

Bradford left their spiritual home at the end of the last year and the consequence of that has resulted in a loss to the tune of £200,000 for the RFL.

The Bulls are growing in hope that, whether they are playing in Super League or the Championship, they’ll be back at Odsal next season.

But it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that Bradford being in Super League and raking in substantially more central funding improves their chances of making a return to the ground more financially viable. They only left a year ago due to crippling costs.

Take into account the financial impact Covid-19 has had on the RFL itself, with the income streams of the Challenge Cup Final and a three-Test series between England and Australia lost due to the pandemic, now more than ever they need Odsal occupied.

Like Elstone, it’s clear that Ralph Rimmer will have a significant influence on the recommendations made by the RFL trio, regardless of if his name is mentioned. For balance, the RFL’s three panellists are Karen Moorhouse, Tony Sutton and Dave Rotherham, who had an almost 20-year association with the Broncos spanning back to 1986, when they were known as the Fulham Colts.

Returning to the subject of Elstone, with a picture being drawn in this writer’s mind, I asked him specifically about the prospect of Bradford going back to Super League.

“I want this process to be forward-looking, dealing with contributions in 2020 and to that extent, it should only be looking backwards to validate what that club could do moving forward.”

Read into that what you wish. The minds of many are already made up.

Of course, the major elephant in the room is the fact one of the club’s minority owners is none other than Nigel Wood, the former RFL chief executive.

The dynamic of that is hard to read. Super League clubs memorably split from the RFL due to their disillusion with the way Wood was running the game.
They felt they didn’t have enough influence on the way the sport was run and that too much protection was given to lower league clubs.

That said, the clubs have no influence in this vote (one wonders why Toronto weren’t given the same treatment, but that’s a story for another day), and given their long history for short-sighted, self-interest motivated decisions, there’s a good chance they’d vote Bradford in for the away fans they’ll bring and the beer and burgers they’d sell.

The Bulls are one of only four clubs to win Super League in its 25-year history. More recently they’ve endured a torrid decline largely down to woeful mismanagement that saw the club go into administration four times before eventually being liquidated. That saw them go from World Champions to League 1 in the space of 12 years.

Even last year was something of a circus off the pitch. The Bulls ended up in special measures, were blocked from signing players and contracted players tried to force moves away from the club after it emerged than pension payments had not been made.

Andrew Chalmers, the previous owner who had no issue blasting everything and everyone in rugby league while his own club crumbled, walked away and handed over the club to Wood and his family, who had been involved in the process of selecting Chalmers as the club’s new owner when the original club was liquidated. Are you managing to keep up? Well done if so.

The Bulls now appear far more stable with Mark Sawyer running the club day-to-day, and few would question that a strong Bradford Bulls is good for the game of rugby league.

But the outcry that would follow if Bradford were handpicked for a return to the top flight would be damning.

Don’t bet against it happening though
Re: SL going to 12 Sun Nov 22, 2020 6:50 pm  

Deadcowboys1 wrote:
Deadcowboys1 Strong-running second rower
Strong-running second rower

Joined: Wed Dec 29, 2010 6:10 pm
Posts: 280
Have said all along that the spectre of Bradford was hanging around like a bad smell.

Still think it should Broncos despite screwing teams over with the late decision making & yes we have no team to compete. Toulouse my 2nd choice but picking any of the others just signals the continuing decline of RL.
Re: SL going to 12 Sat Nov 28, 2020 10:34 am  

Victor wrote:
Victor Stevo's Armpit

Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2020 5:49 pm
Posts: 81
Am I right in thinking that the decision, as to which teams is given the 12th Super League spot will be announced on the 16th December?
I am just interested to see who gets it.
Re: SL going to 12 Sat Nov 28, 2020 5:59 pm  

itsmeagain wrote:
itsmeagain Cheeky half-back
Cheeky half-back

Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2015 2:51 pm
Posts: 548
If its Bradford then the RFL have stuck two fingers up to any team outside the M62 corridor and stated expansion is never going to happen. It should be London or Toulouse and I edge with London as with Covid and Brexit freedom of travel for teams and fans may not be easy with permits and finances. London however have played SL and have given more to the expansion process and development than any other team, new clubs starting up all over the SE, development at a great standard. Look around SL they all have London lads.
Re: SL going to 12 Sat Nov 28, 2020 7:27 pm  

Exbronco wrote:
Exbronco Stevo's Armpit

Joined: Mon Aug 19, 2019 1:19 pm
Posts: 68
itsmeagain wrote:
If its Bradford then the RFL have stuck two fingers up to any team outside the M62 corridor and stated expansion is never going to happen. It should be London or Toulouse and I edge with London as with Covid and Brexit freedom of travel for teams and fans may not be easy with permits and finances. London however have played SL and have given more to the expansion process and development than any other team, new clubs starting up all over the SE, development at a great standard. Look around SL they all have London lads.

Totally agree. If it’s the bulls. And they pull up the drawbridge on p&r I think you may see London and Toulouse disappear. David won’t carry it if no promotion
Re: SL going to 12 Sat Nov 28, 2020 8:21 pm  

itsmeagain wrote:
itsmeagain Cheeky half-back
Cheeky half-back

Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2015 2:51 pm
Posts: 548
No nor would I if I were David
Re: SL going to 12 Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:06 am  

User avatarjaybs wrote:
jaybs User avatar
Bronze RLFANS Member
Bronze RLFANS Member

Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2002 5:47 pm
Posts: 4481
Location: North West
Sad how Rugby League seems to change its mind like the weather! for me Super League should have stayed at Licences, and they should have been reviewed if a club if a club struggled either on or off the pitch constantly! IF Bradford are given this 12th place, it will stink! and bring the name of the game into disrepute!

Tomorrow was supposed to be the deadline for written applications, Widnes withdrew? I would love to see what we have submitted, if we have!
Re: SL going to 12 Sun Nov 29, 2020 12:54 pm  

User avatarwire-quin wrote:
wire-quin User avatar
Silver RLFANS Member
Silver RLFANS Member

Joined: Mon Jan 23, 2006 7:38 pm
Posts: 6735
Location: Looking for a coach that can coach
jaybs wrote:
Sad how Rugby League seems to change its mind like the weather! for me Super League should have stayed at Licences, and they should have been reviewed if a club if a club struggled either on or off the pitch constantly! IF Bradford are given this 12th place, it will stink! and bring the name of the game into disrepute!

Tomorrow was supposed to be the deadline for written applications, Widnes withdrew? I would love to see what we have submitted, if we have!


Hopefully the club will inform us whether they have applied and what the strengths of the bid are.
Mac out!
Re: SL going to 12 Sun Nov 29, 2020 3:21 pm  

User avatarjaybs wrote:
jaybs User avatar
Bronze RLFANS Member
Bronze RLFANS Member

Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2002 5:47 pm
Posts: 4481
Location: North West
wire-quin wrote:
Hopefully the club will inform us whether they have applied and what the strengths of the bid are.


Just received email from the club, perhaps they do read the forum? Criticism is always hard to make, but all we want is to ensure that we succeed with Rugby League in London at Super League Level, and I agree with so much said in the email, sent via Clubforce,

'It has never been the style of the Broncos to speculate or shout from the roof tops. From our owner David Hughes, a private man, and throughout the rest of our club, we pride ourselves on being dignified and respectful and saw little benefit in speaking out on speculation regarding what may or may not happen with the withdrawal of Toronto.

As a club we firmly believe we tick the majority of the boxes required in the criteria and long before this process was speculated on we had already started work on a number of projects in the Spring that will see the club work towards meeting the required standard of Super League in every single aspect, including higher crowds. These developments have taken months to implement and are still a work in progress but we are hopefully close to fruition and we expect to be able to announce these soon. We would love to shout about these things but until signed and delivered we prefer to keep our cards close to our chest.

Our Academy is regarded as one of the biggest expansion success stories in the British game, funded by our owner David Hughes, and for the benefit of the game as a whole for a number of years, producing talent that has gone on to win International Honours, Super League Grand Finals and Challenge Cups. This Academy and Scholarship programme provides a pathway all the way through to Elite level Rugby League. Well before the players are selected for the Scholarship programme they play our game across the South East at the community clubs in the region, these clubs do a brilliant job nurturing the young players. A large number of staff are required to ensure this system works as well as it does and with Rob Powell heading up this department for a number of years the hard work of all of these people is now starting to become apparent.

On the field our staff are of equal high regard with one of the brightest young coaching groups in the game. Danny Ward is a charismatic Head Coach with a thoughtful and modern approach to the Rugby League gaining fans around the sport for his approach to Super League in 2019 that saw us miss out on survival on points difference.. Jamie Langley, Tom Tsang, Mike Eccles and Nick Naylor head up the support of our Head Coach with an energised approach to learning and improvement which has seen us progress our performance side year on year and use innovative methods to get the best out of our players. All of our performance team are fully committed to bringing a number of Academy products into the first team squad each season and we currently run with around 70% home grown players in our first team squad, something many others would struggle to rival.

Our off-field team is small but highly experienced and the work they are doing in the community and commercially is starting to pay dividends. A structured plan for both community development and commercial aspects of the club is in place and the response has been fantastic. Our award winning community team is set for expansion as part of a wider club progression and we hope to see 2021 bringing a record number of school engagements for the club. Commercially brands are continuing to want to partner with the Broncos, despite the difficult times many are facing, and we have many partnerships ready to reveal for 2021.

We will put forward a strong case for the Broncos to be in SL 2021 and, of course, feel that we are one of the stand out candidates for a place in the sports Premium competition. A strong London side opens doors in the media and commercially that Rugby League needs as a National game. However, should our bid be unsuccessful we are already well underway with preparations for building a squad capable of winning the Championship and an off-field progression that would ensure the club is making huge strides forward. These plans were in place long before Super League became an opportunity and all of our staff have been fully focussed on building the club this summer.

We’re fully aware of our own fans frustrations with the lack of signings this year so far however, David, Danny and myself have wanted to take a cautious approach to squad building. We have very specific requirements when we look to bring in players, a requirement that ensures the dynamic and tightness of the squad is not disrupted and we are still very active in talking to players for 2021. The general feeling, around the whole game, and not just within the club, is that there will be a lot of activity in early 2021 when clubs can plan for the start of the season and potential travel issues are lifted so we are confident of picking up further quality throughout the winter. What I can assure fans is that we will start 2021 with a squad of players raring to go regardless of which competition we are in.

I’m also seeing a number of people wanting more from the media team and are critical of communication. At the moment a large number of our staff are furloughed. In fact we have worked the full lockdown with very few people undertaking all duties at the club so being able to please everybody has been difficult. Our intention has been to keep people informed when there is something to say but often there is very little we are able to update. It has been a frustrating time, we understand that, and hopefully we are now on our way out of this tough period. Our supportive fan group will hopefully soon see a return to some normality.

Hopefully there is some light at the end of the tunnel and that we will be able to welcome supporters back into the ground when the 2021 season kicks off.'

Jason Loubser

CEO
PreviousNext

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: nkpom and 43 guests

Quick Reply

Subject: Message:
   
Please note using apple style emoji's can result in posting failures.

Return to London Broncos


POSTSONLINEMEMBERSRECORDTEAM
5,116,4531,26478,4214,559SET
LOGIN HERE
or REGISTER for more features!.
When you register you get access to the live match scores, live match chat and fixtures and you can post in the discussions on the forums.
YOU HAVE RL CHAT OFF
Please Support RLFANS.COM


YOU HAVE RL FIXTURES OFF
RLFANS Recent Posts




X