The EFL say they are ‘considering all options’ as they release a statement on the controversial Reading owner Dai Yongge.
Just days on from the protest which led to the abandonment of Reading’s League One fixture at home to Port Vale, the English Football League have issued a further fine to Dai Yongge after he failed to pay what he owes for a fourth month.
Reading fans made their way onto the pitch just moments after the game got underway, and are to discover their punishment next week.
Yongge was told to put 125 per cent of the wage bill into an account which would be allocated after he failed to pay the staff a series of three times in 2023, and despite being told to again, he continues not to do so.
EFL Statement: Mr Dai Yongge
— EFL Communications (@EFL_Comms) January 15, 2024
As Reading FC supporters are only too aware, it has in recent months become increasingly clear that Mr Dai Yongge is no longer in a position – or does not have the motivation – to support the Club financially as he did following the change of control in 2017.
In November 2023, the EFL called for the disqualification of Mr Dai following the failure to fund the deposit account to cover player and staff salaries following repeated breaches of EFL Regulations. This was ultimately rejected by an Independent Disciplinary Commission and a financial sanction was imposed instead.
The EFL has now received confirmation that Mr Dai did not meet last Friday’s latest deadline to fund the deposit account as ordered, meaning he has been in default for nearly four months. As a result – and as per the terms of the 15 December decision - a further £50,000 fine has now been imposed, taking the total to £80,000.
His continued failings mean that once again the Club’s hardworking staff have no reassurance as to payment of wages and demonstrates a clear disregard for his obligations as a director of the Club.
In respect of this issue, the League will now consider all available options it has under the Regulations and will have no hesitation in bringing further charges against Mr Dai.
In the meantime, and for the sake of the future of Reading FC, its staff, supporters, and local community we urge Mr Dai either to fund the Club adequately or to make immediate arrangements to sell his majority shareholding to appropriate new owners so everyone can move forward with renewed optimism.
For our part, we will work with Mr Dai, his team, and the Club plus any potential purchaser to navigate and meet the requirements of the Regulations as quickly as is physically possible and bring an end to this difficult period for all parties.
What followed the events at the end of last week were the unfortunate scenes on Saturday afternoon that led to the abandonment of the fixture versus Port Vale, and further demonstrated the impact the current situation is having on everyone associated with the Club.
However, entering the field of play is a criminal offence and puts the safety of all participants at risk. The EFL Board will discuss events at Saturday’s match during its meeting later this week as it has a responsibility to the League’s member clubs and the competition to ensure all 72 Clubs meet the requirements of the rules as previously agreed by EFL Clubs.
Finally, the League has been in regular dialogue with the Supporters Trust at Reading (STAR) in recent months and has always made – and will continue to do so – itself available to recognised supporters’ groups to discuss challenging situations and, regarding current matters involving Reading, has arranged to meet with representatives of a number of groups in the next 24 hours.
Here’s how fans reacted with the EFL ‘considering all options’ as they release statement on Reading owner Dai Yongge…
@SaintsSocialite: Just get him gone. He’s killing Reading .
@teamslikeLuton: You’re to blame once again.
@agbnufc_: Football governance is on it’s arse completely.
@ShrewsburyJohn1: Football needs an “independent “ regulator quickly to oversee ownership and administration, clearly @EFL as the administration body is unable or unwilling to act in the interests of the paying fans and the wider game.
@MattJoy96: You. Allowed. The. Takeover.
@arnie_rfc: Criminal offence for entering the field of play? How about the criminal offences of failing to pay HMRC PAYE on a consistent basis. Staff at a constant worry as to if they can afford their mortgage each month. Expel that crook from our club. That’s the only option.
@Readingfan106: Question, if you are punishing him for not paying and funding the club, why do you continue to fine him? Like he’s gunna pay it!! Where does that £80k fine go? Can it be paid towards staff and meals at the club?
@EmmaStonePT: So basically you are going to fine a club which is already in financial difficulties because the fans stood up for themselves .. punish the fans when all they want is to push to get their club in a better place
@wafcian: So can we get our 8 points back then if all you’re doing is handing out fines, feel for reading fans but you’re as useful as a chocolate fireguard!
@rimmington01: You lot are a joke, I’m sorry but if he’s not paying staff or funding the club what so ever, how do you think fining him is gonna make a difference? You’ve literally gone oh ye that money you aren’t paying to the club we are just gonna add to that 🥴. Corrupt to the core you lot
@gary23557: I don’t recall these announcements when Wigan were in this position? And we had further points deductions when salaries were not paid? Am I missing something? Genuine question ?
@m1871e: Forget criminal offences of fans being on the pitch. Biggest criminal in this club is Dai himself, and you should be doing a lot more than ‘strongly’ advising him. Sort it out before we die.
@Tatum1871: He had failed a takeover with Hull weeks prior to buying Reading and the Chinese club he owned was already in severe debt and had to be relocated to cut costs and keep it afloat. The danger signs were there
@ScottGraham_10: Once again you’re asking for the spare £20 in his wallet. Surely you have a basis to up the anti for a repeat offender🤦♂️
@J0nFaulkner: You should also be talking about blocking any transfer activity outgoing for the club at this point also. Dai Yongge is about to sell all our assets at budget prices and take the cash.
@dingjohnny1871: The simple thing to do which is the easiest thing to do is GET RID OF HIM. Literally remove him as an owner and bring someone else in. He is not fit to own a club, and you are not fit to host football.