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Derby County charged by EFL for Financial Fair Play violation

Derby County v Barnsley - Sky Bet Championship

General view of Pride Park, home to Derby County during the Sky Bet Championship match between Derby County and Barnsley at the Pride Park, Derby on Thursday 2nd January 2020. (Photo by Jon Hobley/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

NurPhoto via Getty Images

Championship club Derby County has been charged by the EFL for breach of league spending rules in the three-year period ending in June 2018 and will be subject to an independent disciplinary committee.

Clubs that play in the Championship are allowed by EFL Financial Fair Play rules to post losses of no more than $51 million over a three-year period. Derby County posted a $19.1 million during the 2017/18 fiscal year, but that included the highly criticized $104 million sale of Pride Park to owner Mel Morris.

Derby now faces a possible points deduction at the hands of the disciplinary committee, which will hear arguments from both the EFL and from Derby County. No date for the hearing has been announced.

The sale of Pride Park will be a major point of contention during the hearing. With the sale, the club posted a loss of just $10.4 million over the three-year period. However, with Morris acquiring the stadium and leasing it back to the club, the transaction appears to have the sole purpose of doctoring the club’s finances.

The Rams could face a point deduction should they be found guilty. Birmingham City was given a nine-point deduction last March for similar violations. Derby County sits 17th in the Championship table, but have challenged for promotion in the last few years, qualifying for the playoff in three of the last four seasons.

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