Fleetwood boss Joey Barton says: We need rules on player stockpiling as well as cap on wages

Fleetwood Town boss Joey Barton admits a salary cap of some kind was necessary, though he does have certain reservations about the new regulations introduced at League One level.
Joey Barton keeps a close watch on his Fleetwood charges during last weekend's Carabao Cup win over WiganJoey Barton keeps a close watch on his Fleetwood charges during last weekend's Carabao Cup win over Wigan
Joey Barton keeps a close watch on his Fleetwood charges during last weekend's Carabao Cup win over Wigan
Read More
Barton backs keeper Cairns to make most of opportunity

And he believes they should go hand in hand with rules to prevent top clubs from stockpiling young players.

League One clubs are now limited to a maximum annual outlay on players’ wages of £2.5m.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

And while that may help a club like Fleetwood to compete, Barton accepts that it penalises the more affluent sides with the bigger fanbases.

Town’s head coach said: “I think that if you can get 20,000 or 30,000 in your stadium, you should have an advantage over a team that can maybe only get one or two thousand.

“But I do feel something needed to be done about the sustainability of the football pyramid.

“I think it was necessary to introduce some sort of measures to control the competitive urges of football clubs because sometimes the longevity of a club can be risked as we have seen with Bury. Bury are a big club in their community and we can’t allow those sort of things to happen.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“So if it needs something that protects the well-being of the game I think it’s a smart thing, but I feel sorry for clubs who are able to generate enormous revenue via their fanbase and can’t utilise that in a transfer capacity.”

There is a concern that the cap may affect the movement of Premier League and Championship players to clubs further down the EFL pyramid on loan, as those lower league clubs may not be able to make as large a contribution as before to those players’ wages.

“Because the Premier League are not under a salary cap, it may be a couple of windows before they realise what demands a cap places on League One and Two clubs,” added Barton, who is concerned about top sides holding on to players who are not featuring in their team.

He explained: “Big clubs stockpiling young players is part of the problem.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“The big clubs take all the best players naturally, so if we are to have a salary cap I think we should limit the number of players clubs can have. It’s a way to let the quality players cascade down the pyramid.

“And if clubs can’t stockpile, it gives clubs like us a chance to develop and sell players further up the food chain with a transfer fee and a sell-on to open up another revenue stream.

“If big clubs are hoovering up every talented kid from the age of eight, it’s rather like trawlers throwing out a big net in the North Sea and the stocks dwindle.

“If we aren’t careful we’ll do the same with players because if we bottleneck them at 17-22 you can destroy players. If players don’t get an opportunity at that vital age, we’ve seen them go overseas to play.”