Football and the General Election – what do the manifestos say?

From the official FSA.Org website:

With the General Election taking place today (Thursday 4th July 2024) we thought we’d take a look at what references the major parties are making to football specifically or, failing that, sport in general.

Of course people will make their electoral choices based on a lot more than football, but we are a football organisation so it’s relevant for us to highlight those elements of the manifesto. 

With a record-number of candidates, and a massive range of parties contesting this election, we had a rule of thumb for looking at manifestos – they had to be standing in countries which the FSA covers (England and Wales) and in more than 100 constituencies.

We made an exception for Plaid Cymru as there are only 32 constituencies in Wales, so they couldn’t be expected to surpass the 100 barrier, but their views are relevant to our members in Wales as they are standing across that entire nation.

The Conservative Party, Labour Party and Liberal Democrats all commit to establishing an independent regulator. As an organisation we want to see the Football Governance Bill reintroduced to Parliament soon – and so do 200+ of our supporter groups.

Quick links: ConservativesGreensLabourLib DemsPlaid CymruReformWorkers Party of GB.

In alphabetical order:

Conservative Party
  • We will introduce laws to ensure our fans never again face the threat of clubs in England joining breakaway closed-shop competitions and giving them more of a voice through the Independent Football Regulator. 
  • The Conservative Party stands up for women and girls in sport. We delivered equal access for grassroots sporting facilities for women and girls, the £30 million Lionesses Futures Fund, established the Board of Women’s Sport and are implementing recommendations from the Carney Review of Women’s Football. We will prioritise equal access for women and girls in our ongoing programme of investment in grassroots sports facilities.

More here…

Green Party
  • A ban on all blood sports, including trail hunting and strengthening and extending the 2004 Hunting Act
  • Invest £5 bn investment in community sports, arts and culture.
  • Support local grassroots sports clubs, music and art venues.
  • Allow access to school sports facilities by local clubs and teams outside teaching hours to ensure maximum use of a valuable resource. 
  • Enable local authorities to maintain key sporting infrastructure including pools and playing fields. These need to be used across all sections of the community to ensure sport is inclusive.
  • Permit local authorities to invest in shares in professional sports clubs which operate in their area as a means of maintaining a connection between the club and its community. Any dividends paid to the authority must be reinvested into public sporting facilities or coaching programmes in the area.

More here…

Labour Party

Access to music, drama and sport has become difficult and expensive because of ticket touting. Labour will put fans back at the heart of events by introducing new consumer protections on ticket resales.

Labour is committed to making Britain the best place in the world to be a football fan. We will reform football governance to protect football clubs across our communities and to give fans a greater say in the way they are run. We will introduce a Football Governance Bill, which will establish an independent regulator to ensure financial sustainability of football clubs in England. We will never allow a closed league of select clubs to be siphoned off from the English football pyramid. 

More here…

Liberal Democrats

Ensure a sustainable future for football clubs and give fans a stronger voice by:

Establishing the promised new independent regulator, placing it on a statutory footing, and giving it the power to impose a fairer financial flow that rewards well-run clubs.

Strengthening the propriety test for prospective owners and directors by including human rights questions.

Requiring all clubs to have equality, diversity and inclusion action plans.

Expand the list of sporting fixtures which must have live free-to-air coverage to include more football matches as well as key international cricket, rugby, golf and tennis fixtures.

More here…

Plaid Cymru

We support the better promotion of Welsh culture and heritage, including the Football Museum for Wales in Wrexham and the National Gallery of Contemporary Art.

We look forward to Wales hosting the under-19 men’s international football tournament and hosting the opening of Euro2028 in Cardiff. 

More here…


Protect Country Sports: These increase investment and help conservation of our environment. They boost rural jobs, communities and local economies.

More here…

Workers Party of Great Britain

Football, with its roots firmly in working class Britain, should become the “people’s game” once again. In recent years external predatory capitalist forces have stolen the game from the people.  We see ever-increasing commercialisation and exploitative merchandising.

Financial institutions, particularly from overseas, leach billions out of our proud football clubs and exploit the traditions that uphold this beautiful game to make ever increasing profits. In addition to pricing working class fans out of the game profit driven owners are exploiting football clubs in a fashion that is unsustainable in the long term, often leaving our clubs burdened with debt backed by the land assets that really interest foreign investors.

We believe that a fan owned model would provide the best safeguard to prevent a situation where parasitical entities suck the blood out of the game. A model of club ownership that is more in tune with the fanbase would tend to be more successful and sustainable than one that runs counter to it.

The success of the club would be prioritised by fan-owned clubs rather than emphasis given to predatory profiteers lining their own pockets. The aim of fan owned clubs would be to make the club sustainable and re-invest money for its further development. This would have an additional benefit of creating a more democratic, transparent and accountable structure that would deliver greater social value for the local communities in which they operate.

We already have numerous successful examples of fan owned clubs throughout the world. In Germany, under current licensing arrangements operated by the Deutsche Fussball Liga, football clubs are obliged under law to be fan owned (the “50 +1” rule means a 50% stake by fans +1 more vote, i.e., a majority). Memorably, the 2012/13 Champions League was contested by FC Bayern (which is 75% fan owned) and Borussia Dortmund, two clubs owned by their members.

We already have 17 clubs in the English pyramid that are wholly owned by supporters – including Telford United, Wycombe Wanderers, and FC United of Manchester and these need our protection. We will also encourage local community engagement to discover new sports talent (and not only in football) and restore playing fields to local communities.

More here…





‘Chelsea Supporters Group’ can also be found on X and Facebook

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