Promoted Super League club set to face top flight funding gap in 2021

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The club promoted to Super League to replace Toronto Wolfpack next season is set to receive just over half the central funding of its rivals.

The top flight clubs have voted to admit a 12th team in 2021 after they rejected the Wolfpack’s bid to rejoin the top flight following their mid-season withdrawal.

Mirror Sport understands they have also agreed that the successful club – which will go through an application process overseen by Super League and the RFL – will receive £1million from the central distribution pot.

At present, top flight clubs receive approximately £1.72million each year, although that can rise to around £1.8million with add-ons for TV appearances and academy funding.

Clubs are now lining up to replace Toronto Wolfpack in Super League next year
(Image: Getty Images)

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There is also the further issue that clubs are expecting to receive a reduction in central funding from Sky next year following the shortening and disruption of this season.

But it means the new club will be at a significant disadvantage from the start – although that has not put off teams looking to secure a top flight place.

As many as 10 could apply to join Super League from either the Championship or League One, with several having already publicly confirmed their bid.

Among those set to mount a case include Championship Featherstone Rovers, Halifax, Leigh Centurions, London Broncos, Toulouse Olympique, York City Knights, while League One Newcastle Thunder have previously expressed their top flight ambitions.

The criteria they will have to meet has not yet been set, but the process they will have to go through is expected to be finalised by next week. It is expected to include minimum standards that could include an on-field element.

It will be overseen by a joint RFL and Super League panel with an independent chair, and it is hoped that a decision will be reached by early December to give the successful club time to recruit a competitive squad.