EFL: Suspended Points Deduction

On Friday the EFL announced that Birmingham City had entered into an Agreed Decision with regards to the investigation into breaches of the Owners and Directors Test (OADT) during the attempted Maxco takeover. The club have been issued with a two point deduction, suspended until the end of the 2023/24 season.


The official EFL announcement can be read at this link while the BCFC statement can be read at this link.

With all the recent positivity thanks to the news of the Shelby Companies Limited takeover, I thought it was important to put out a quick question and answer piece based on what I know to help alleviate fears.

Why have Blues been sanctioned?

It feels a little unfair as I don’t think the club actually did much wrong during those months when Maxco were involved with things, but there is precedent.

Rochdale received a six point deduction suspended for two years after it failed to comply with regulations after shares were purchased in the club by Morton House in July 2021; a company ironically which was at one point linked to Matt Southall.

The club confirm in their statement that they did everything they could to comply with the investigation and this is why I think the punishment is much smaller than Rochdale’s.

I believe the club was going to contest the punishment but I suspect with everything else going on it’s one more thing to deal with and it’s easier now to just accept the punishment and move on.

Vong Pech has also accepted a slap on the wrist for his involvement.

How does the punishment work?

Essentially, nothing will happen unless Blues break the OADT rules again.

What this means in reality is that we can expect absolute radio silence from Tom Wagner, Jeremy Dale etc until the Blues deal is done; I expect they will also do everything they can to be visibly not doing anything at the club until the EGM is complete and the deal is done.

What about the Wang Yaohui investigation? Will this impact on that?

The honest answer to this question is I don’t know. I would hope that it wouldn’t, as this investigation pre-dates the Maxco one.

At the moment, the Wang Yaohui investigation is bogged down in legal stuff; I understand Lei Sutong has responded in a robustly litigious manner and I think we won’t see charges come out until the EFL are satisfied that is sorted.

That was to be expected. The charges in the Wang Yaohui investigation have serious implications for those involved and there will be every effort possible to shut them down before they are announced.

While I do expect people to be worried, we really shouldn’t be. It’s something that has happened, it’s been dealt with and we can move on.

On reflection I’m much happier Blues have taken this sanction now, rather than having it as one more thing to think about while the last legal bits of the takeover are done.

It’s still time to be positive.