Premiership: First ever salary cap report published

·3-min read
 Credit: PA Images
Credit: PA Images

Premiership Rugby has published a salary cap report for their 2020/21 season – a decision which is seen as the governing body’s first move towards being more transparent.

The report is set to become an annual one, following the recommendations of the Myners Report, and although it does not show clubs’ wage bills or players’ salaries, it provides a rundown of expenditure in the Premiership.

Lord Paul Myners, who passed away in January, was a former cabinet minster who put together a report on the Premiership‘s salary cap after Saracens were punished for repeatedly breaching it.

Implemented the recommendations

One of the Myners Report’s main recommendations was greater transparency and Premiership Rugby followed through with their report – a 20-page document – which indicates senior players’ average salary for the period between July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021 as well as how much each player in certain positions earns on average.

“One of the main principles set out in the Myners Report emphasised the promotion of greater transparency, to broaden and deepen visibility and scrutiny about how the salary cap operates in practice,” said Premiership Rugby chief executive Simon Massie-Taylor.

“This report, which covers the season 2020/21 is borne from his recommendations and will become an annual publication.

“It was very sad to hear of the passing of Lord Myners earlier this year. Premiership Rugby is extremely grateful for the huge amount of time and commitment he put into the review.

“We believe that through his report and recommendations he has helped us continue to operate a world-leading system.”

The salary cap report includes Saracens although they spent 2020/21 season in the Championship after they were relegated at the end of the 2019/20 campaign for repeatedly breaching rules.

Sarries made an immediate return to the top flight in England and will be involved in Saturday’s Premiership final at Twickenham against Leicester Tigers, who received a £309,841.06 fine in March after they did not comply with salary cap regulations when a third-party company made image rights payments to their players.

Premiership Rugby’s salary cap director, Andrew Rogers, believes there is enough in place to prevent from potentially trying to circumvent the current salary cap rules.

“If someone does decide to transgress, the power is there and they can have trophies stripped or can be relegated so there is serious punishment for transgression,” he said.

“We are always looking at things, that is key. A large part of investigatory work is part of what we do on a regular basis.

“That (Leicester) case in particular was a quick process due to the cooperation of the club. The news was leaked in December and the decision being made in March is quick in terms of sporting investigations so we were able to move quickly on that which was pleasing.”

Some of the 2020/21 salary cap report’s crucial findings included the average senior player total salary being £171,187 while fly-half is still the most profitable playing position.

A Premiership fly-half’s average salary is £175,679 while centre and second-row are next best with £167,779 and £158,617 respectively. Hookers earn the least amount on average at £113,115.

Amongst the other findings were: Experience leads towards better wages with players who have played in more than 100 Premiership matches earning on average £205,000, while players who have made more than 50 appearances at Test level would receive £325,306 on average.

All the clubs are subject to an annual audit for the salary cap report, which allows Rogers to peruse as far back as a five-year period.

In addition to this, an extended audit now takes place for the Premiership champions, which allows for a more forensic look England’s best club’s finances.

READ MORE: Saracens: Maro Itoje always confident his club would be back amongst Premiership’s best


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