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SBD Global/April 25, 2014/Finance

Russia's Second-Tier Football League Proposes Salary Cap After Spate Of Bankruptcies

The Football National League (FNL), Russia's second tier football league, has proposed a salary cap of 300,000 rubles ($8,400) a month for players as of next season in a bid to improve the financial situation of the league's squads. The league has also proposed to introduce a cap on a player's total income, including bonuses and compensations, but its size is yet to be determined. The move was apparently triggered by a string of recent bankruptcies of FNL squads. Earlier this year, two FNL squads, Alania Vladikavkaz and Salyut Belgorod, pulled out of the competition as they were unable to pay their huge outstanding bills.

VICTIM OF FINANCES: Alania, a one-time champion and two-time runner-up of the Premier League, based in the Caucasus region of North Ossetia, was among the most likely candidates for promotion to the Premier League in the season's first part. However, the squad went bankrupt when its sponsor pulled out of a $40M-a-year deal. Salyut was reportedly several months behind in paying the players' salaries when the squad announced it was pulling out of the league and dissolving last January. Although FNL players' salaries are generally much lower than their Premier League colleagues', footballers' salaries still account for a substantial part of most squads' budgets. A final decision about the salary cap is to be made during the summer break.
Vladimir Kozlov is a writer in Moscow.
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