Saracens accept relegation to Championship next season

20 Jan 2020

By: Sport Industry Group

Premiership Rugby have confirmed that 2019 champions Saracens will be relegated at the end of the current season.

The club will continue to compete in the top division through to the end of the 2019/20 season, but after admitting that they will still be in breach of salary cap regulations, Saracens have accepted relegation.

In a statement accepting the decision, the club said its Board "wishes to unreservedly apologise for the mistakes made in relation to the salary cap regulations.”

Neil Golding, Chairman, Saracens, said: "As the new Chairman of Saracens I acknowledge the club has made errors in the past and we unreservedly apologise for those mistakes.

"I and the rest of the Board are committed to overseeing stringent new governance measures to ensure regulatory compliance going forward.’’

Darren Childs, Chief Executive, Premiership Rugby, said: "Premiership Rugby is prepared to take strong action to enforce the regulations governing fair competition between our clubs. At the conclusion of dialogue with Saracens about their compliance with the salary cap regulations, it has been decided that Saracens will be relegated at the end of this season.

"At the same time as enforcing the existing regulations, we want to ensure a level playing field for all clubs in the future, which is why we have asked Lord Myners to carry out an independently-led review of the salary cap. As part of this process, we will soon be announcing an open consultation so that everyone involved in the game has the opportunity to contribute to its future.

"The actions that we have taken – dealing with breaches of the current regulations and reviewing the system for the future – will help us to build a stronger league and uphold the confidence of supporters."

The reigning English and European champions, meanwhile, secured qualification to the last eight of the Heineken Champions Cup, where they will meet Leinster as they look to retain their title. In the event of victory, however, the club will not be able to defend their crown next season as Champions Cup rules state a team must take part in the Premiership, PRO14 or Top 14 to qualify for a place.

Meanwhile, Eddie Jones has named his 34-man squad to take part in the 2020 Guinness Six Nations campaign, with seven players coming from Saracens.