Downing Street has condemned the "backroom dealing" behind revolutionary Project Big Picture plans.
Liverpool and Manchester United are heavily involved in the plans alongside EFL chairman Rick Parry and, if adopted, they would represent the most significant changes to English football in a generation.
While the proposals promise an immediate £250million rescue package for EFL clubs starved of income by the coronavirus pandemic and a fairer share of revenue in the future, they have been criticised for concentrating too much power among the league's big six clubs.
Manchester United striker Ryan Giggs holds the FA Cup after the final against Chelsea, at Wembley, which United won 4-0.
Manchester United (top row left to right) Alec Downie, Henry Moger and Robert Bonthron. (middle row l-r) Enrets J Mangnall (Secretary), John Picken, Charles Sagar, Thomas Blackstock, John Peddie and Fred Bacon (trainer). (front row l-r) John Beddow, Charlie 'Charles' Roberts, Alec Bell and Thomas Arkesden.
Manchester United goalkeeper John Hacking (left) claims the ball.
1948: Manchester United, in the Royal Blue shirts, and Blackpool, in the white shirts, come out onto the field at the start of the FA Cup Final at Wembley, London.
BBC TV cameras film the FA Cup Final
Manchester United fans in Trafalgar Square on the morning of the match.
Manchester United manager Matt Busby (c) and two of his players, John Berry (L) and Duncan Edwards (R).
Bobby Charlton of Manchester United.
Manchester United's Tommy Taylor.
The wreckage of the British European Airways plane which crashed in Munich on February 6, 1958, while bringing home members of the Manchester United football team from a European Cup match. * Of the 43 passengers on board the plane, 23 died of whom 21 were killed in the crash, while pilot Ken Rayment and Duncan Edwards died later. * 25/08/2001: A survivor of the crash said, 2001, he was "not surprised" that inquiries into the tragedy led to diplomatic tensions with Germany as revealed in recently released official papers.
Manchester United captain Bill Foulkes leads the makeshift United team out against Sheffield Wednesday for their first match since the Munich Air Disaster.
Manchester United goalkeeper Harry Gregg pushes a shot safely outside the post, during the FA Cup semi-final match at Villa Park. Result was 2-2 draw, teams will meet again at Highbury.
Manchester United's Bobby Charlton balances the ball on his forehead.
HRH The Duke of Edinburgh (l) shakes hands with Manchester United manager Matt Busby (r) before the match as United's Maurice Setters (second l) and Bobby Charlton (second r) look on
Arsenal goalkeeper Jim Furnell (c) shows his disappointment as Manchester United's Denis Law (r) celebrates with teammate David Herd (9) after scoring his team's third goal.
George Best, Manchester United
Denis Law, Manchester United
George Best, Manchester United
Manchester United's Bobby Charlton lifts the European Cup
Manchester United manager Matt Busby holds aloft the European Cup to the salute of cheering crowds outside the Town Hall in Manchester. At the right is the Lord Mayor Alderman Harold Stockdale.
(L-R) Manchester United's George Best runs at the Everton defence, watched by Everton's Alan Ball
Manchester United's George Best (c) shows off the 1968 European Footballer of the Year award, which journalist Max Urbini (l) presented to him before the match, as teammates Bobby Charlton (second l, 1966 winner) and Denis Law (r, 1964 winner), and manager Matt Busby (second r) look on
Manchester United manager Wilf McGuinness (right) shakes hands with Sir Stanley Rous (centre) as Bobby Charlton (left) looks on
Manchester United and Northern Ireland footballer George Best, at his Manchester Boutique.
Manchester United manager Tommy Docherty (centre) celebrates with the FA Cup, with Lou Macari (third right) and Gordon Hill (second right)
Ray Wilkins, Manchester United
(L-R) Manchester United's Norman Whiteside celebrates his winning goal with John Gidman, Gordon Strachan and Mike Duxbury
Manchester United's new manager Alex Ferguson at a press conference at Old Trafford, decked out in his new team's colours.
PAUL INCE, MANCHESTER UNITED
The two captains, Steve Bruce of Manchester United (left) and Ronnie Whelan of Liverpool (right), with the charity shield
Manchester United's Eric Cantona celebrates scoring the equaliser
Manchester United's Eric Cantona lifts the League Championship trophy for the second successive year, as he hoists the 1992-93 FA Premier League Cup at Old Trafford, in Manchester.
Arthur Ludden, a Manchester United fan for over 60 years, blind for the past five, touches the scarves at the shrine of tributes at Old Trafford.
Manchester United soccer star Eric Cantona (right) with United manager Alex Ferguson (left), during a news conference following the Football Association disciplinary hearing in St Albans. * The three-man FA commission fined the Frenchman 10,000 and suspended him from "all football activities" until September 30 this year after finding him guilty of bringing the game into disrepute.
24-MAR-96 .... Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur. Manchester United's Ryan Giggs takes a corner at a packed Old Trafford
Manchester United's David Beckham celebrates his winning goal with Andy Cole.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer of Manchester United celebrates scoring the equalising goal ... Soccer - FA Carling Premiership - Manchester United v Nottingham Forest ... 14-09-1996 ... Newcastle ... None ... Photo Credit should read: Laurence Griffiths/EMPICS Sport/PA Photos. Unique Reference No. 197211 ... Soccer
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer,
celebrates his goal
Labour leader Tony Blair (left) parries a shot at goal as Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson takes cover behind during a visit today (Thursday) to Devonshire Road primary school in Blackpool where Ferguson was coaching the school's boys and girls football teams.
Manchester United's Eric Cantona (r) and David Beckham celebrate after Beckham scores the winning goal.
Manchester United celebrate Andy Cole's goal
Manchester United team line up
Roy Keane, Manchester United in the rain
l-r: Gary Neville, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, David Beckham and Phil Neville, Manchester United hold the Carling Premiership trophy
Ryan Giggs (left) and David Beckham (right) of Manchester United celebrate
Victoria Adams (Posh Spice) and David Beckham the Manchester United footballer leave the Hotel near Crewe today (Sunday) where the announcement of their future wedding was made.
Manchester United's Dwight Yorke celebrates his second goal on his Old Trafford debut
l-r; Manchester United's Dwight Yorke is congratulated by Andy Cole on scoring his equalising goal
Manchester United's Roy Keane (left) and David Beckham (centre) celebrate the winning goal, scored by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (right)
Manchester United's Ryan Giggs is mobbed by teammates and fans after scoring the winning goal
Manchester United 's Teddy Sheringham celebrates the equalising goal
Manchester United's Ole Gunnar Solskjaer celebrates his winning goal with Dwight Yorke, Ronny Johnsen and Jaap Stam
Manchester United's Paul Scholes (centre) and Roy Keane (right), both suspended for the final, celebrate with the European Cup
This picture can only be used within the context of an editorial feature. Huge crowds at Deansgate, Mancheste, cheer their treble-winning Manchester United football team back from Barcelona. (l-r)Teddy Sheringham, Dwight Yorke and Andy Cole. * with the team's three trophies.
Manchester United footballer David Beckham leaves his home in Cheshire, with a sticking plaster over his left eye. * The Sun reported Beckham required stitches after being accidentally struck by a boot kicked by Sir Alex Ferguson as he vented his fury in the aftermath of Saturday's 2-0 FA Cup defeat by Arsenal at Old Trafford. There is no suggestion that Ferguson meant to hurt Beckham. THIS PICTURE CAN ONLY BE USED WITHIN THE CONTEXT OF AN EDITORIAL FEATURE. NO WEBSITE/INTERNET USE UNLESS SITE IS REGISTERED WITH FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION PREMIER LEAGUE.
Manchester United's Roy Keane holds the Premiership trophy after the 2-1 win over Everton in their FA Barclaycard Premiership match at Everton's Goodison Park ground in Liverpool. THIS PICTURE CAN ONLY BE USED WITHIN THE CONTEXT OF AN EDITORIAL FEATURE. NO WEBSITE/INTERNET USE UNLESS SITE IS REGISTERED WITH FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION PREMIER LEAGUE.
Manchester United's new signing Wayne Rooney (r) and manager Sir Alex Ferguson pose with his shirt
Manchester United debutant Wayne Rooney celebrates after scoring his second goal against Fenerbahce, during their UEFA Champions League Group D match at Old Trafford, Manchester. THIS PICTURE CAN ONLY BE USED WITHIN THE CONTEXT OF AN EDITORIAL FEATURE. NO WEBSITE/INTERNET USE UNLESS SITE IS REGISTERED WITH FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION PREMIER LEAGUE.
Arsenal's Thierry Henry attempts an overhead kick on goal as he is put under pressure by Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand
Manchester United captain Roy Keane (centre) leaves court.
A young Manchester United supporter stands in front of a protest banner in Cardiff ahead the FA Cup Final between Manchester United and Arsenal. Fans were protesting at the takeover of Manchester United by US multi-millionaire Malcolm Glazer.
l-r Bryan, Avram and Joel Glazer in the crowd to watch the Manchester United and Debrecan game
Manchester United's Ruud van Nistelrooy celebrates his goal with Wayne Rooney (l)
Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring the equalising goal of the game
A red sky above Old Trafford
Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo with both the PFA Young Player of the Year award and the PFA Player of the Year, and Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson with his PFA Special Merit Award
Manchester United's Wayne Rooney stands in heavy rain.
Manchester United players celebrate winning the Barclays Premier League
Manchester United's Nemanja Vidic (right) and Dimitar Berbatov (left) celebrate winning the Carling Cup
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson celebrates with the Premier League trophy
A banner in the stands thanking outgoing manager Sir Alex Ferguson
Manchester United's Memphis Depay celebrates scoring his side's first goal of the game during the Barclays Premier League match at Vicarage Road, Watford. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday November 21, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Watford. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: EDITORIAL USE ONLY No use with unauthorised audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or "live" services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications.
Manchester United's Wayne Rooney (left) and Michael Carrick (right) lift the FA Cup trophy after the Emirates FA Cup Final at Wembley Stadium. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 21, 2016. See PA story SOCCER Final. Photo credit should read: Mike Egerton/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: EDITORIAL USE ONLY No use with unauthorised audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or "live" services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications.
Manchester United's Anthony Martial (left) celebrates scoring his side's third goal of the game with team-mate Paul Pogba
File photo dated 15-01-2020 of Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
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Now, the Prime Minister's official spokesman has said: "It's clear that this proposal does not command support throughout the Premier League.
"It is exactly this type of backroom dealing that undermines trust in football governance.
"In terms of support for EFL clubs, we have been given assurances by both the Premier League and the EFL that they have no intention to let any club go bust due to Covid and we know that they have the means to prevent this from happening within their existing mechanisms.
"We would strongly urge the Premier League and the EFL to continue to work constructively to come up with a deal that provides a comprehensive package of scores for the whole football family."
Parry has rejected the suggestion that proposals to give greater voting rights to the nine longest-established clubs in the Premier League, which includes the division's big six, amount to a power grab.
Asked on BBC Radio Four's Today programme whether the bigger clubs were simply in it for more money, he said: "No, they're not, they're giving a lot of money to us. Why would they be giving 25 per cent of the TV revenues to (the EFL) if all they were trying to do was grab power?
"They care about the pyramid. This will come out, the truth will come out, their passion for the pyramid will come out.
"Let's not get hung up on process and 'he said, she said', this is a really good plan for the pyramid and let's make it happen."
Sources close to the Big Picture plans accept there are many indirect benefits to the big six within the plans – notably affording them the ability to sell eight matches a season to fans outside the UK direct from their platforms, from which they would stand to make more money than smaller clubs, plus the freedom created by an 18-team top division to play more lucrative European and friendly matches.
Ultimately it is accepted that these proposed changes, which those involved insist are a work in progress, must be signed off by the Premier League clubs.
The Football Association retains a 'golden share' in the top flight which it can invoke where it feels something detrimental to the good of the game is occurring.
The Premier League said on Sunday the proposals would have a "damaging impact" on the English game.
It is understood to be concerned by the revenue distribution models within the plans, which it claims means the team finishing top would earn four times more in central payments than the team at the bottom. Currently, the top team earns 1.8 times more than the bottom team.
Forest Green chairman Dale Vince said the plans to dramatically increase the share of Premier League broadcast revenue cascading down to the EFL were "exciting" but accepted the proposed changes to Premier League voting rights were likely to be "contentious".
He proposed a middle ground where a simple majority vote replaced the current system whereby 14 clubs must support a motion for it to be carried.
Better funding and end of parachute payments are two big things that come from this plan. Positive changes. https://t.co/QAtZTRzRZG
"This has got some questionable elements – it's not perfect but they might just be negotiating points," he told the PA news agency.
"The bit I'm thinking of is the proposal for six big clubs in the Premier League to dominate the voting. If that was done as a simple majority that would be an improvement on where we are today where it takes 14 out of 20 to pass any rule change.
"I think that is the part that people are railing against as far as I can see. It stands out as a bit of a power grab – we'll give with one hand but take something a little bit bigger with the other hand.
"It's the most contentious part of the whole package."
Southend chairman Ron Martin gave his tentative backing to the idea based on the information currently in the public domain.
He told PA: "It appears to me that whilst the principles are agreed between some parties, the detail still needs to be understood and accepted by others.
"Nevertheless, from what we do know it does appear to represent a fairer and sustainable way forward for the football family."