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Luton Town’s chief executive officer Gary Sweet believes the club will emerge from the coronavirus outbreak in a stronger financial position than their Championship competitors.
All professional football in England, and indeed around much of the world, was postponed until April 30th last week due to the outbreak of coronavirus.
It’s cast a lot of doubt over how to finish the season, and indeed whether the season should be finished or made ‘null and void’ as some have suggested.
Though it looks like we will finish the campaign at the expense of starting the next on time, but Sweet believes his Luton side are in a better position than most to tackle the financial hardship that’s coming with the outbreak:
“Our plan this season wasn’t to lose money and I think every single other club in the Championship will lose money,” Sweet explained to Luton Today.
“You’ve seen the kinds of losses that some of those clubs are making when they’re breaching financial fair play at a 39 million loss over a three year period, that’s a stark problem – we’re lucky that we’re not included in that bag.”
Luton won promotion from League One last season.
They did so on a shoestring budget and have been that way for a number of years, leaving them in a much stronger financial position than the likes of Leeds United or West Brom for example, who’ve been freely spending the millions in their bid for promotion.
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“So the best news in some ways, is if you just purely look at it from a competitive point of view, which I don’t like to do for this reason, but when we come out of this, we’ll be incredibly strong,” continued Sweet.
“We’ll be nimble, fleet of foot, we won’t have as much debt as anyone else, we should be really raring to go more than any other club.”
“Recruitment is going to become a major part of that as well,” Sweet explained. “With clubs like ours who are quick to the market, make quick decisions, it should play to our hands competitively.
“But this is going to harm football, so really ahead of Luton Town Football Club, the chief concern for us is that we’ve got a healthy competition to play in.”
Luton, for all their profits and whatnot, look set for relegation if and when the season resumes. They currently sit in 23rd-place and with six points separating them from safety, but Graeme Jones’ side have won three of their last six, losing just the one.
From what looked to be a hugely disappointing season in the Championship for Luton could yet be a prosperous one.
They can still fend off relegation given their current form, and they look set to get through this pandemic with minimal financial disruption – but nobody knows how long this disruption will last.