Saracens say it is in English rugby’s interests to resolve salary cap situation

Saracens have reiterated they will do whatever is “reasonably required” to prove they are operating within the salary cap for the current season as they face the threat of automatic relegation.

The double winners are reported to have been told they will be demoted into the Championship at the end of the season following a summit of Premiership Rugby Limited chief executives in London on Tuesday.

Saracens were last November docked 35 points and fined £5.36million for breaking the £7million salary cap for the past three seasons.

Saracens, with the likes of Owen Farrell, are in a relegation fight
Saracens, with the likes of Owen Farrell, are in a relegation fight (Tess Derry/PA)

However, patience appears to have run out amongst rivals over their efforts to fall within the limit for the 2019-20 campaign, having added England internationals Elliot Daly and Jack Singleton to their squad over the summer.

Chief executive Ed Griffiths presided over an emergency meeting of staff and players at the club’s Hertfordshire training ground on Friday morning amid ongoing efforts to reduce their wage bill.

Griffiths admitted earlier this month there must either be wage reductions or players trimmed from the squad in order to comply with salary cap regulations and it has been reported that £2million is the amount of savings needed to be found.

“Discussions are continuing and nothing has been finalised but our position remains the same,” Griffiths said in a statement issued to the PA news agency.

“It is clearly in the interests of the league and English rugby that this matter is dealt with as soon as possible and we are prepared to do whatever is reasonably required to draw that line.”

Timeline. Saracens get charged with breaking the cap.They dispute it and lose.This only happens in this current season. Get a fine and points reduction. When it becomes apparent that despite deduction they wont get relegated this season is questioned. How could they correct it?

— Brendan Venter (@BrendanVenter) January 17, 2020

Answering a series of questions from fans on social media, former Saracens boss Brendan Venter fanned the flames by claiming the club are victims of an “agenda” from their Premiership rivals, who are determined to see them relegated.

“Timeline. Saracens get charged with breaking the cap. They dispute it and lose. This only happens in this current season. Get a fine and points reduction. When it becomes apparent that despite deduction they wont get relegated this season is questioned. How could they correct it?” Venter said on Twitter.

“They then ask for an opportunity to correct it before 31 Jan. The clubs refuse. This would have put Saracens within the cap legally for the year. Granted with a bit of luck because of injuries but nevertheless in the cap. Now tell me there was no agenda from the start?

“The good news is that Saracens is a club with a great culture of looking after people. They have taken a big knock but in these times character kicks in. Watch them overcome this, keep the team together and come back stronger. Life is way more interesting with challenges.”

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