Reading could be hit with yet more sanctions from the EFL following the news that first team players are unlikely to receive all of their wages this month, according to journalist Darren Witcoop.
The League One club are in the midst of a turbulent season and have already had four points deducted since the beginning of the campaign. This follows on from the further 12 points that they have had sanctioned against them in the past couple of years and supporters continue to voice their anger towards owner Dai Yongge.
The Royals suffered relegation from the Championship last season and have been hit with a number of penalties in recent months, including one against Yongge himself after he failed to deposit the required amount into the club’s account to cover wages. In a statement released last week, the EFL said;
“Reading FC’s owner, Mr Yongge Dai, has been charged with misconduct after failing to comply with the order of an independent Disciplinary Commission which required him to deposit an amount equal to 125% of the Club’s forecast monthly wage bill in a designated account by 12 September.
“The League considers these further proceedings against him personally are necessary given the repeated failings in meeting the Club’s funding requirements which have only a detrimental impact on the Club and its wider stakeholders.
“This matter will now be considered by an independent Disciplinary Commission in accordance with EFL Regulations.”
It is believed that the Chinese businessman still has no intention of selling the club, despite increasing pressure from fans and interest from the US.
Earlier today, RDG.Today reported that Yongge had once again failed to pay a HMRC bill, with Witcoop adding that first team players and staff have been informed that they will not receive their full wages on time, whilst the under-21s will fail to collect a single penny whatsoever. The journalist added that, if true, further point deductions could be on the way.
Sad state of affairs. Also sounds like Reading first-team players and staff been notified they are unlikely to receive full wages on time and Under-21s not receiving anything again unless extra funding is secured. If that’s the case, another points deduction. EFL have to step in
— Darren Witcoop (@DarrenOWitcoop) September 25, 2023
On the pitch, manager Ruben Selles is trying to make the best of the situation he has found himself in but suffered a 4-1 defeat at the hands of Blackpool on Saturday. The result leaves the club 22nd in the table, although they would have been as high as 17th without the sanctions they have received this season.
Witcoop is right in his assessment that the EFL now need to step in and take action. Although that would be unprecedented, Reading could find themselves dropping to League Two should they continue down this route or, even worse, end up like Macclesfield and Bury and find themselves extinct.
The fans do not deserve this and it appears that lessons have not been learnt from other instances in the past. Regulations need to be brought in swiftly to prevent this happening again in the future. There are too many cases such as this now, with Scunthorpe United another that are also suffering.