DFB President Wolfgang Niersbach (l.) and League Association President Dr. Reinhard Rauball will continue to work together in the future
DFB President Wolfgang Niersbach (l.) and League Association President Dr. Reinhard Rauball will continue to work together in the future

DFB and League Association finalise new Rules and Governance contract

Frankfurt - German football can look forward to continued harmonious cooperation between the professional and amateur games. The German Football Association (DFB) and League Association have extended their Rules and Governance agreement, which has regulated mutual rights and responsibilities since 2001, for a further four years, until 30 June 2017.

Continued co-operation

The DFB board unanimously approved the new contract on Friday (2 May) in Frankfurt/Main, after it had previously been rubber-stamped by the League Association executive.

In essence, the Rules and Governance agreement ensures that the League Association will continue to regulate and market the Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2. The DFB will continue to retain responsibilities pertaining to the German national team, the DFB Cup, disciplinary procedures, refereeing assignments as well as overall charge of youth, amateur and women’s football. The League Association will remain a member of the DFB in future, as will the regional and state associations, and be accordingly represented on the appropriate committees.

Built into the agreement is also an understanding that there will be an exchange of payment, alongside professional football expenses, relating to services such as refereeing, disciplinary board and anti-doping costs.

"Unity and solidarity"

This extends to revenue-sharing of funds accruing from the marketing of the national team, as well as the league’s media and ticket sales-generated income. Furthermore, the agreement, which still formally requires the approval of the DFB and League Association general assemblies, calls for the league to maintain its solidarity payment to the state and regional associations, to the tune of one million Euro, whilst simultaneously asking for voluntary compensation of up to one million Euro to help promote the development of youth prospects at amateur clubs.

“The Rules and Governance agreement provides ongoing evidence of the unity and solidarity in German football,” said DFB president Wolfgang Niersbach. “This clear commitment to cooperation between the professional and amateur games is a globally unique model for success.”

“The league serves as a pillar of unity for football in Germany,” explained Dr. Reinhard Rauball, president of the League Association. “Our Rules and Governance agreement is widely envied throughout Europe. The highest level of the game, which we have been particularly privy to in recent days, can only be maintained on healthy foundations - and vice versa. In that context, both sides can be pleased at having the necessary security to plan for the coming years.”

Grassroots support

Hermann Korfmacher, vice-president of the DFB’s amateur division, believes the new agreement is a vital building block for German football: “For the next four years the Rules and Governance agreement will provide a solid economic base on which we can build to face the major challenges ahead in amateur football, some of which have come about as a result of demographic changes.”

Included in that package is an extensive training programme for coaches, referees and clubs at both elite and amateur level, the ongoing promotion and support of honorary work, the promotion of girls', women's and school football, the implementation of campaigns with societal relevance and the establishment and maintenance of fan projects outside of Germany's top two professional divisions.

Revenue sharing

Guaranteed funds of ten million Euro will be set aside for the ongoing development of the DFB talent promotion programme and the establishment of centres of excellence to further strengthen the game at grassroots youth level nationwide. The future contract terms will maintain the inclusion of a five million Euro DFB subsidy for the regional associations to help underpin their budgets and in so doing relieve the financial pressure of the country's amateur clubs. This will ensure that the regional associations are able maintain their comprehensive all-round matchday service for the clubs.

Furthermore, the professional game will continue to contribute a share of its ticket sales revenues with the amateur associations. Bundesliga clubs will pass on two per cent of their match ticket profits to the respective regional or state (Land) association; for Bundesliga 2 clubs, the figure is one per cent. In addition, the DFB will continue to receive three per cent of the revenues generated from television and ticket marketing of the Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2. Over and above this, the League Association will divert a set amount to the DFB to cover refereeing matters and disciplinary and anti-doping measures.

In return, the League Association will continue to receive a portion of the revenues generated from the marketing of the German national team. The DFB will moreover cover 50 per cent of the surpluses arising from World Cup finals and European championships as compensation to the clubs for releasing their players for said tournaments. Proceeds amounting to 1.5 million Euro are additionally earmarked for the Bundesliga Foundation by way of a charity match every two years.