Premier League institution Everton are in serious trouble. Not just because of their unparalleled success on the field, but because they are now looking at a significant points deduction.
Recent reports have suggested the Premier League will demand a heavy penalty for the Merseyside club if they are found guilty of breaching Financial Fair Play rules, which could result in a hefty 12 point deduction for the Toffees.
Having only narrowly survived in the Premier League for the last two seasons, such a significant punishment could see Everton relegated for good, and they certainly have in the last two campaigns.
While a decision is unlikely to be made before the end of the year, this is what the Premier League would look like if Everton were to receive a 12-point deduction.
Everton denies responsibility / Visionhaus/GettyImages
After breaching FFP rules and regulations, an independent panel has now been tasked with assessing Everton’s case. While the Premier League wants to hand out a strict 12-point deduction, it will be up to the committee to decide what punishment Everton will receive.
Everton are believed to have lost £371.8m, while the Premier League is only allowed to lose no more than £105m. As a result, the Toffees could be in deep trouble.
Everton have denied wrongdoing, insisting they worked within FFP rules and that exemptions such as the pandemic contributed to their significant financial losses.
The Merseyside club are currently in the midst of a potential takeover, with Farhad Moshiri working on a sale to US private equity firm 777 Partners. While talks are expected to continue despite this potential penalty, the company still needs to pass the Premier League’s “fit and proper persons test” to complete the takeover.
It is believed that the independent commission will make a decision before the end of 2023. It is possible that Everton will receive a lower point deduction or even just a large fine, but the uncertainty hanging over the club is likely to take its toll on Sean Dyche and his players.
Sean Dyche will struggle to save Everton if they receive a hefty penalty / Nathan Stirk/GettyImages
Everton currently sit 16th in the Premier League following their loss to Liverpool in the Merseyside derby at the weekend. The Toffees had made a slight recovery with wins over Brentford and Bournemouth after a dismal start to the campaign, but they have still collected just seven points from nine games.
If they were to receive a 12 point deduction it would take Dyche’s side to -5 points. Remarkably, they would still be just six points clear of bottom-placed Sheffield United, but that would put them ten points from safety as it stands.
With West Ham United, Manchester United, Newcastle United, Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City in their next ten league games, things could look significantly worse for Everton on Boxing Day.
Bottom half of the Premier League if Everton are deducted 12 points
Only two clubs in Premier League history have been relegated in the past: Middlesbrough in 1996/97 and Portsmouth in 2009/10.
Middlesbrough were awarded three points in the ’96/97 season for failing to meet Blackburn Rovers in the Premier League after illness wreaked havoc on Bryan Robson. Despite their protests, they were punished regardless and eventually went down by 2 points in a cruel twist of fate.
Portsmouth, meanwhile, were dropped a whopping nine points in early 2010 after going into administration. As a result, Pompey finished with just 19 points – 16 from safety – and have not returned to the top flight since.
While precedent suggests the Toffees are in deep trouble and will be fighting an uphill battle to survive if they fall victim to points deduction, the opening weeks of this season’s Premier League show there are several teams in dire straits at the foot of the table, and with teams significantly weaker than Everton’s .
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