Premier League clubs have voted against a ban on related-party loans ahead of the January transfer window, with the motion failing to reach the required support of 14 clubs by a single vote.
The crunch vote at the Premier League shareholders’ meeting on Tuesday was split 13-7 in favour of fast-tracking a ban on loans between associated clubs, which meant it fell narrowly short of the two-thirds majority verdict.
It means Newcastle United, for example, will be free to sign players from clubs who are also primarily owned by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment fund.
The Magpies have been heavily linked with former Wolves captain Ruben Neves, who completed a move to Al Hilal in the Saudi Pro League this summer. Al Hilal are one of four clubs in the Saudi Pro League who are now also owned by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment fund, as well as Al-Nassr, Al-Ahli and Al-Ittihad.
Newcastle have been hit by a major injury crisis in recent weeks, while also losing summer signing Sandro Tonali for the rest of the season due to a betting ban.
Manchester City, Chelsea and Brighton’s ownerships also operate a multi-club model, and the rise of such structures prompted questions of sporting integrity and the fairness of related-party transactions.
The Independent also reported on Monday that Premier League clubs were likely to be split on another vote concerning a new proposed financial distribution model between the Premier League and EFL.
The vote was expected to create divisions between the so-called “bix six” clubs and the rest of the top-flight, who believe they will feel the hit of the newly proposed financial distribution model more than the wealthier sides in the competition.
However, a vote did not take place, despite a three-hour discussion, and the motion will be voted on at another time.