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West Ham among clubs against EPL restructure proposal

Fears are growing within English Football of a power grab manoeuvre from the Premier League's big clubs who are looking to shake up the competition from 2022.

West Ham's Michail Antonio, right, celebrates after scoring his side's third goal against a deflated Norwich City. Source: Associated Press

The Project Big Picture proposal would see the English Premier League reduced from 20 teams to 18, while scrapping the EFL Cup and the Community Shield.

There would also be changes to the relegation system and nine clubs would be given special voting rights on certain issues.

Parachute payments would also be removed.

However, the deal would see the EFL get 25 per cent of all future TV deals along with the nearly $500 million bail-out many clubs have demanded since May as they battle with revenue loss because of Covid-19.

West Ham United has already told British media they're against the move, saying they fear the financial consequences of losing two home games.

Club officials say opening the football calender for more European games and lucrative pre-season friendlies would disproportionately favour bigger clubs.

Britain's Minister for culture, media and sport, Oliver Dowden says he's skeptical about the proposed changes.

"If we keep having these back room deals going on, we'll have to look at the underlying governance of football. We promised in the manifesto a fan-led review, and I must say the events that I've seen in the last few weeks have made this seem more urgent again."

It follows similar sentiments from Prime Minister Boris Johnson's office, who says it would undermine the governance of the sport in England.

"In terms of support for clubs we have been given assurances by the Premier League and English Football League that they have no intention to let any EFL club go bust due to Covid and we know they have the means to prevent that from happening within existing mechanisms," the spokesperson said.

"We strongly urge the Premier League and EFL to continue to work constructively to come up with a package of support for the whole football family."