Tranmere owner Mark Palios has been making a lot of headlines in the past week and his latest interview is fascinating for Leeds United fans.
Palios is lobbying hard for the EFL to take a different approach to promoting and relegating teams in League One on unweighted points-per-game – the current recommendations that clubs will be voting on.
In fact, Palios wants teams promoted but for no teams to be relegated.
His latest broadside in the Daily Mail details an ‘astonishing’ conversation he had with a senior EFL official, who he claims said it is not a requirement of the leagues to play every team twice.
It means that EFL leagues could be ended and declared complete at any time.
The Daily Mail claims it shows the “EFL are increasingly worried about a backlash from clubs — and about the attitude of the Premier League — if they fail to finish this season.”
In a follow-up piece in the Daily Mail, Palios claims EFL chairman Rick Parry said eight Championship clubs had said they were worried that removing relegation from the EFL would be a “catalyst” for the Premier League to do the same.
That scenario could lead to Leeds’ promotion being blocked.
Talking in the Daily Mail Palios said, “They’re trying to make their rules fit the argument, not the other way around. A senior EFL executive seriously tried to redefine the end of the season to us.
“He said it doesn’t actually say you have to play every team twice, so the season ends when you’ve played all the games you can play. That was his justification. Good luck with that when there is about 150 years of precedent.”
Palios hasn’t ruled out court action if Tranmere are relegated.
We’ve said before that we’ve got a lot of sympathy for Tranmere and the situation they’re in. They’d be relegated by 0.04 of a point if the season is ended early, on the back of three wins in a row.
The pressing concern for Leeds is promotion but it’s still possible to have empathy for other sides. If Leeds were in Tranmere’s position we imagine that Leeds would be lobbying hard to avoid being plunged into League One.
However, these are exceptional times and the recommendations the EFL have laid out – to end seasons early on points-per-game – are set to be voted on.
If they get a majority then they become the rules for the leagues going forward. That’s how these things work.
We’re not doubting that Palios’ conversation happened but it’s irrelevant at the moment as a new framework of rules has been drawn up.
The vote involving all 71 EFL clubs is expected to pass and Tranmere’s only hope then is for League One to play on or take it to the courts.
From our perspective, blocking relegation would be a very dangerous precedent that could have a major negative impact on Leeds.
We say promotion and relegation has to happen throughout the football pyramid.
In other Leeds United news, Huge promotion boost incoming for Leeds as John Percy delivers key update from Weds EFL meeting