LIVERPOOL managing director Ian Ayre believes it’s vital that the Premier League follows UEFA’s lead by adopting Financial Fair Play (FFP).
The European governing body’s rules, which come into full effect in 2013/14, state that clubs must break even over a three-year period.
Anyone who fails to meet the regulations – brought in to prevents clubs spending more than they earn in pursuit of success – face exclusion from UEFA competitions.
Talks between top flight clubs over implementing a similar set of financial controls domestically are ongoing.
The topic will once again be on the agenda at next month’s Premier League shareholders’ meeting.
Reds owners Fenway Sports Group have always been vocal advocates of FFP which will curb the spending power of the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City, who are bankrolled by billionaires.
Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United and Tottenham are among those who want the Premier League to adhere strictly to UEFA’s regulations.
However, others are in favour of formulating a less stringent set of rules which would allow a rich benefactor to cover a fixed amount of losses.
For any new regulations to be passed they would need the backing of at least 14 Premier League clubs.
An agreement remains some way off but Ayre says there is a general consensus over the need to implement spending controls and is confident a compromise will be reached.
“There absolutely has to be some rules domestically,” Ayre said.
“Six or more of the clubs will have them anyway as a result of playing in European football.
“For me it doesn’t make sense that only a third of the league is subject to that. Anyone with an aspir-ation to play in Europe will need to comply with UEFA so it makes sense for everyone to be ready.
“What form that takes is still a work in progress.
“At the most recent Premier League meeting there was a proposal put forward which centred around two things.
“One was adopting a form of FFP across the Premier League, the other part of it was the introduction of some short-term cost controls to manage the level of investment clubs could make.
“It’s too early to say what the outcome of that will be. The positive thing is that the clubs of the Premier League are working closely together.
“There is a good, healthy debate and everyone wants something to come out of that.”
All Premier League clubs will benefit from a massive hike in television income from the start of the 2013/14 season with revenue from domestic and global TV rights deals topping £5billion over the next three years.
New financial controls would help guard against the prospect of the extra cash going straight to players and agents rather than into youth development, improving facilities or debt repayments.
“We’re sitting here in the most popular league in the world with the largest TV rights in the world and we have to protect the integrity of the clubs and the way they operate,” added Ayre.
“I think there’s an almost unanimous view that something has to be done to ensure we are all kept in good shape and well managed.
“The ultimate goal is to protect the level of investment made by clubs so it balances well with the level of revenue. It’s about keeping that in kilter.
“It’s a great indicator of how professional the Premier League is compared to other leagues at times that all the clubs are working together. That has to bode well for the players and the fans.
“No-one wants to see any club go out of business.”
FSG’s determination to ensure Liverpool balance the books – coupled with the club’s continued absence from the Champions League – has had an impact on transfer spending.
But Ayre has dismissed suggestions that the Reds have had to lower their sights when it comes to prospective signings.
He said: “Can Liverpool still attract the best? Absolutely. Not only attract the best there is but also retain the best there is.
“Look at the commitment shown by the likes of Suarez, Agger, Skrtel and Sterling, who have all signed new deals.
“All the players we have got to commit, whether they’re players coming in or those already here, shows that people believe in the plan and they believe in the manager.
“I certainly have never been in any negotiation over the past year or so where any player or agent has told us that they don’t think Liverpool is big enough or bright enough as an opportunity.
“We remain a world class club and a world class attraction to players. I read that Daniel Sturridge said he has joined the biggest club in the Premier League – that says it all. Here’s a player who has played for Chelsea and Manchester City.
“He had seen the size, the power of this club and what it means after just a few days in the place.”