Buying a football club will set you back a few quid, but you’ve also got to pass the Premier League and EFL’s ‘fit and proper persons test’. That all seems like a bit of a faff to the team behind the award-winning podcast The Price of Football, so acclaimed comedy writer Kevin Day, football finance expert Kieran Maguire and producer Guy Kilty start an imaginary club instead. In Unfit and Improper Persons they take West Park Rovers on a hilarious journey from the lowest level of the FA pyramid right up to the English Football League, the Premier League and, if fortune favours the fictional, into the heart of Europe.
At least that’s the plan, but inevitably they face a few challenges along the way. Where to find a shirt sponsor? What should the mascot be – is a dog called Rover too obvious? Can they pay the women’s team the same as the men’s team? (Spoiler alert: hardly anyone else does.) And how can they get Messi to the Kleanwell Stadium next season, like they promised the fans?Roofing over the toilets, paying the electric on the floodlights, salary caps, parachute payments and avoiding bankruptcy, never mind relegation – owning a football club isn’t all about stuffing prawn sarnies and quaffing champagne in the directors’ box. Unfit and Improper Persons is informed, funny and, thanks to exclusive interviews with those who’ve been there, done that, it lays bare the labyrinthine world of football finance.