The RFL have confirmed the areas in which IMG’s club grading criteria for the licencing of potential Super League clubs will focus.
However, they have also confirmed that the rebrand of the men’s and women’s Super League will be complete in time for the new season.
That stated that: “IMG sister company and cultural marketing agency 160over90 expects to complete the wider rebrand of the Men’s and Women’s Super League competitions later this year ahead of the 2024 season launch.”
What exactly this means is unclear. However there has been talk of a new name, a new trophy and an overall new feel to the competition which has had the same title and same trophy since its inception in 1996.
What name would be considered remains unclear at this moment in time.
What is clear is the grading criteria for clubs who want to play in the top tier.
This will consider the following five areas:
Fandom (25%): encouraging clubs to attract more fans in stadia, at home and digitally, and to improve fan engagement, contributing to both club and central revenues.
Performance (25%): incentivising clubs to perform on the field and drive fan awareness and engagement. Teams will be ranked between 1 and 36 based on where they finish in the leagues for the previous three seasons. Bonus points will be awarded to teams who win league and cup competitions in the previous season.
Finances (25%): reflecting the success of fan engagement and business performance and rewarding sustainable investment, as well as diversified revenue streams and sound financial management.
Stadium (15%): based on a number of factors, including facilities and utilisation, which add value to the fan and broadcast or digital viewer experience, and match or exceed competition from other sports and events.
Catchment (10%): based on area population and the number of clubs in the area, with a view to maximising growth of the sport in the largest markets to generate new fan bases and incentivise investment.