Rugby league clubs have reportedly ‘overspent putting themselves at risk financially’

A lot has been made in the past few months and years about what structure the RFL and Super League will look forwards for the future.

It had been mooted that Super League would be increased to 14 for 2023 before a potential two Super League divisions of ten for 2024, with Championship clubs trying to scramble for players in order to be in the mix for one of those places.

However, it appears as though such a restructure may not be around the corner with a potential licensing system being brought in, meaning some clubs have spent over the odds for little reason.

Bradford Bulls reporter The Game Caller tweeted: “Privately and publicly a number of Championship clubs are cutting costs to survive for 2023 and beyond. The feeling amongst many is that they have been misled by the RFL over the implementation of the two divisions of ten and have overspent putting themselves at risk financially.”

The input of IMG is expected to take the sport into a brand-new era after signing a 12-year deal with the RFL to effectively ‘re-imagine’ the sport.

In doing so, IMG has assembled a team of experts across its Media business and the Endeavor network to work with the newly combined entity on strategically repositioning the sport to maximise its commercial potential for long-term growth, build deeper relationships with fans and attract new audiences.

The agency will initially focus on competition restructuring, content production and innovation, domestic and international distribution of media rights, digital transformation powered by IMG’s digital sports arm Seven League, brand strategy delivered by Endeavor’s cultural marketing agency 160over90, and streaming through Endeavor’s OTT platform Endeavor Streaming.

As part of a second phase of work, IMG will also provide data collection and data-driven product development, including sports betting products and streaming rights via its sports data and technology business IMG ARENA.

But, the one major sticking point has been where will the sport head in terms of the future structure with that blueprint set to be revealed in early September.

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