Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

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josie andrews
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Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by josie andrews » Tue Dec 03, 2019 3:21 pm

Brian Carney has floated the idea about slashing the Super League salary cap limit to £1m.

Currently, clubs can spend up to £2.1m on their senior squad with extra allowances, including two marquee players each

Ex-Warriors winger Carney, anchor of Sky Sports' coverage of Super League, admits he is not a fan of restricting how much players earn.

But with the current broadcast deal running out in two years, he suggested a drastic reduction in the wage ceiling would leave the sport with some money in reserve - and questioned what impact it would have on clubs' squads.

Speaking to freelance journalist John Davidson on the By The Balls podcast, he said: "I've said it many times, I don't believe the salary cap does what it purports to do.

Where you to get rid of it, how much worse off would you be? Some club owners say it'd be the demise of their club I'm not sure that's true.

Listen to the full Brian Carney interview here

"Something seems inherently wrong about capping the wages of a player, or artificially suppressing it.

"Here's the thing - and I've tossed this around in my head - I'm wondering do we need to keep the salary cap and reduce it?

"It's currently about £2m, give or take. If you were you to drop it to a million, what would be the effect?

"Filter out the hysteria and what would happen?"

While some of Super League's top players would attract interest from the NRL, Carney says the competition has many average players on good contracts who would remain.

"If we go from the collective to the individual, take a player on 80 grand - and there are a lot in Super League, who I would consider average at best, earning that much money," said Carney, who played at Wigan from 2001 to the end of '05.

If you drop that to £40,000, he either accepts it, or goes to find a job elsewhere.

"Well, go online on the job sections and see what you've got to do for 40 grand. My point is we're playing players 80 grand or 160 grand, and if we're saying we're a sport which needs to preserve what money we have - then we may have to do something radical, like drop it down.

"Why am I advocating a drop in cap? Because the game may need something in its bank account in two years.

"If you insist on having a salary cap, you may need to think it down again.

"Is our game going to collapse? How many will stop playing, how many will go to union, to the NRL? They are important questions. But I would guess it would not be as drastic as some people think."

Carney, who also played for Great Britain and Ireland as well as Newcastle Knights and Warrington, says six-figure contracts used to be reserved for the elite players.

"That's not the case now, we're paying 140 grand to players who wouldn't get near an international side, that wouldn't be in the top 20 - maybe the top 50 - in Super League," he said.

"I remember hearing about an Australian prop, no longer playing, at a side in the lowest third of Super League and looking at £100,000. If I told you his name you'd be staggered. And he got that!

"If you're going to cap it, cap it and get some benefits of it. I understand the contradiction in what I'm saying. But if you've nothing in the bank account after two years, can you afford (a salary cap of) £2m?"

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Re: Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by southportcdm » Tue Dec 03, 2019 4:53 pm

Brian seems to forget that he was a player once. I wonder how much less he'd have accepted for putting in all that effort into training etc. When union players like George Ford are looking at £600 000 per year for their next contract I don't see how Super league could compete with an even smaller cap. I see the point Brian is trying to make but I'm not sure that most of the players will agree with him.

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Re: Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by Wigan_forever1985 » Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:18 pm

This translates to me as SKy want to cut our funding and trying to get their mouthpiece to normalise the idea
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Re: Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by Barney841 » Tue Dec 03, 2019 6:37 pm

Has he been smoking crack? If anything it would be nice for the cap to rise a little.
Think professional rugby league would die out if it did drop to a million

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Re: Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by fozzieskem » Tue Dec 03, 2019 7:30 pm

Wigan_forever1985 wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:18 pm
This translates to me as SKy want to cut our funding and trying to get their mouthpiece to normalise the idea
Funily enough I thought the same thing, not that his musings don't have merit there are average players earning big money for a minority sport, but you need this eplayers to make team up though surelY?

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Re: Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by Caboosegg » Tue Dec 03, 2019 7:52 pm

He obviously wants to kill the sport.
The player pool isnt big enough in league to cut the wages and still have a entertaining sport.

Maybe sort out.the RFL so they dont lose grass route funding again.

Or even have a word with your bosses to promote the sport they got given the licence to instead of everything but it.

When promoting what they show in the coming year your more likely to see swimming that rugby league.
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Re: Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by Caboosegg » Tue Dec 03, 2019 7:55 pm

fozzieskem wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 7:30 pm
Wigan_forever1985 wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:18 pm
This translates to me as SKy want to cut our funding and trying to get their mouthpiece to normalise the idea
Funily enough I thought the same thing, not that his musings don't have merit there are average players earning big money for a minority sport, but you need this eplayers to make team up though surelY?
Im sorry but 80k seem fine to me.

The players are literally giving up there body for our entertainment being in 20-30 car crashes a game and any one could kill/cripple them. When you have a 10-15 year career 80k isnt a lot, some people get that for doing much less with there life.
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Re: Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by Mike » Tue Dec 03, 2019 9:29 pm

Most concerning to me is that he's telling us that we should save money before the next TV deal. He could be picking up on negative feeling inside SKY and assuming that the next deal will be tighter, or it could be a negotiating strategy, but I doubt that TBH.

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Re: Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by fozzieskem » Tue Dec 03, 2019 10:23 pm

I get the feeling the next TV deal will make the current one seem very generous

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Brian Carney: Should Super League salary cap be cut to £1m?

Post by DaveO » Wed Dec 04, 2019 3:24 am

Regardless of whether he’s being Sky’s mouthpiece for a drop in TV money he’s talking nonsense.

Just because a club is stupid enough to pay a shit prop a shed load of money it does not follow that players of the standard of Gildart will stick around for half their current wages. The shit prop might but having a teams full of dross players won’t attract the crowds.

There is also no rule that says the clubs must pay shit props £100k anyway and I simply don’t believe the implication that because the salary cap is £2.1m shit props get to dictate wages to clubs.

If there are such duffers running around what is to stop chairmen offering £40k instead of £100k to someone running around in the lower leagues now?

I also have no idea what he means by save some money before the next TV deal. What are they going to spend it on? What are the tax implications of “saving” it? Wouldn’t it be taxed as profit?

They can’t save it anyway. Numerous players have contracts that run for several years so the cap and wages can’t be cut tomorrow to save cash going forward.

Why would promising rugby players even contemplate RL as a career? When he says look around and see what else you can do for £40k he might be surprised. Not that a 21 year old can earn that but someone who goes to Uni or gets an apprenticeship at somewhere like airbus is building a career that may possibly deliver more than that by the time an RL players career has ended.

Playing RL for 10 or so years precludes you from starting a career elsewhere and there are sadly quite a few examples of former players who fall on hard times after RL as they have nothing to fall back on.

Faced with such a “lucrative “ sporting career many promising juniors players simply won’t bother turning pro or if they do it won’t be in the UK or in RL.

He’s just a pundit with nothing better to do than come out with I’ll thought out nonsense.

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