'Prudent' Glory confident of avoiding points penalty over payments

A-League leaders Perth Glory are confident the club will avoid a points deduction despite being issued with a show cause notice by the FFA for “failure to disclose reportable payments”. 

Glory CEO Jason Brewer addressed the media on Friday morning, reiterating the club hadn’t broken the salary cap.

He also appeared to downplay the chances of the issue affecting their 2014-15 premiership hopes.

The FFA released a statement on Thursday which read: “The show cause notice does not allege that these payments resulted in the club exceeding the salary cap in the relevant years.

“The alleged breaches involve failure to disclose benefits to players relating to accommodation costs, car allowances and the payment of third party agents fees for the 2012/13, 2013/14, 2014/15 Hyundai A-League seasons.”

The FFA will send staff to Perth next week to complete a detailed audit of the club’s affairs, before any action is decided.

Sydney FC are the only club in A-League history to be deducted points for salary cap breaches.

The Sky Blues lost three points and were fined $129,000 in December 2006 after committing multiple breaches.

Brewer referenced another previous breach, when responding to questions about Glory potentially being deducted points which would greatly affect this season’s title race.

“I can only refer to precedent situations like this,” Brewer said.

“You have to go back to 2007 for Queensland Roar - there was a benefit that caused them to go over the salary cap by $15,000.

“Now with that instance, the club received a $15,000 fine, of which half was suspended.

“I don't want to be premature in any of my conclusions here.

“We are still working with the FFA. We have been for the past six to eight weeks.

“We hope now that this show-cause notice, which is the penultimate step in this process, we can respond to it in the appropriate way in the next few days and have it resolved.”

Brewer clarified that the alleged non-cash benefits included accommodation and motor vehicles for players moving from inter-state.

He said their total amount couldn’t possibly lead to a salary cap breach, given the club has had a sizeable gap in player payments and the available salary cap over the relevant seasons.

“We are a fairly prudent club when it comes to managing our finances,” Brewer said.

“As you know there are probably only two A-League clubs who are making money.

“We are reliant on a fairly benevolent chairman and owner to fund the ongoing costs of this club.

“We have to manage our expenses, whether on the pitch or off the pitch, in a prudent way.

“The previous couple of seasons we have been upwards of $150,000 under the cap.

“That gives us the flexibility as you forward, but given the environment we operate in, we have to mindful of that.”

Brewer added that the episode would lead to Glory changing the way it reports player payments.

“We have to take stock about how to assess them,” he said. “There's always ways to continue to improve.

“There's certain areas where I think we are a little bit more careful as to how we go into certain negotiations and discussions.”