Latics ‘open-minded’ to proposed league changes

Jonathan Jackson

Jonathan Jackson

Jonathan Jackson says Wigan Athletic will ‘remain open-minded’ regarding proposed changes to the structure of the Football League.

Plans put forward at the end of last week would see an increase in the number of clubs to 100, which would be split into five divisions of 20.

That would see a reduction in the number of games from 46 to 38 which, although beneficial to the England national side, would obviously see Football League clubs losing a sizeable chunk of their income.

The proposals have been largely negatively received, particularly from clubs at the lower end of the food chain.

But Jackson is wary of making of making any knee-jerk reaction before the full facts are known.

“People don’t like change, and I think what we’ve seen is a normal reaction,” he told the Evening Post.

“People will be sceptical to quite a fundamental change to the structure of the league that’s been as it is for a number of years.

“As a football club we’ll remain open-minded until we learn about the proposals in detail.

“At this stage we are neither for the changes nor against them, and we’ll listen to what the Football League have to say.

“There’s certainly some good ideas around relieving the fixture congestion.

“But of course the downside is you’d be losing four home games a season, and that’s a significant amount of finance involved.

“We’ll wait and see. I don’t think it’s worth jumping to conclusions at this stage until we’ve seen exactly what it entails.”

The matter will be one of the items on the agenda at next month’s annual Football League AGM in Portugal.

And Jackson reckons it will receive the appropriate consideration before a decision is made.

“I do think it’s genuinely up for debate,” he insisted.

“A percentage of the football clubs have got to agree to it before any change can take place, and we’ll be discussing it at the Football League AGM in a couple of weeks’ time.

“I’m sure that will make for a very lively debate!”