A number of top clubs have asked the Premier League to “fast-track” Everton’s charges for alleged breaches of the financial rules, so that any punishment can be imposed before the end of this season.
However, Sky Sports News has been told those requests have been rejected by the Premier League, who responded by saying the disciplinary procedures must follow a strict due process.
The timeframe will be dictated by the independent commission which is assessing the case.
But it’s almost inevitable that any punishment (which could include a points deduction) will come after the end of this season, and so will not affect Everton’s battle against relegation.
Everton are adamant they have done nothing wrong.
In March, the Premier League announced it had charged Everton for breaching profit and sustainability rules for the three-year period ending in 2022, but there has been no comment from the Premier League since.
It is fundamental to the Premier League disciplinary process that it is independent, and cannot be influenced by league officials or by individual clubs.
There has been no indication about how long Everton’s case will take, because there is no precedent for such an investigation being completed.
Manchester City were charged with similar offences in February – a month before Everton – for allegedly breaching financial rules over a nine-year period to 2018. But again – no date has been set for that independent hearing to take place.
City said at the time they were “surprised” at the charges, and looked forward to clearing their name.
The assessment period for which Everton have been charged covers four seasons from the start of 2018/19 to the end of 2021/22.
Everton recorded losses of £371.8m over the past three years. Premier League rules allow clubs to lose a maximum of £105m over three years.
Clubs who break the Premier League’s Financial Fair Play rules can be fined or deducted points.
In a club statement at the time of the announcement, Everton said they were “disappointed to hear of the Premier League’s decision.
“The club strongly contests the allegation of non-compliance and together with its independent team of experts is entirely confident that it remains compliant with all financial rules and regulations.
“Everton is prepared to robustly defend its position to the commission. The club has, over several years, provided information to the Premier League in an open and transparent manner and has consciously chosen to act with the utmost good faith at all times.”