Gary Neville and former Football Association chairman David Bernstein are part of a group calling for an independent regulator to solve the “crisis” in English football.

The group, which also includes former FA executive director David Davies, ex-Olympic gold medallist Denise Lewis and the mayor of Manchester, Andy Burnham, has signed a manifesto for change called ‘Saving Our Beautiful Game”.

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The manifesto says the “national game operates within a model that is fundamentally flawed” and exists in a “dysfunctional and damaging existing structure”.

It comes in the same week the Premier League rejected reforms led by Liverpool and Manchester United in ‘Project Big Picture’.

“If the EPL [English Premier League] is to perform its role as the pinnacle of the domestic game, its responsibilities and financial contribution to the wider game need to be more carefully defined," says the manifesto.

“It also needs to be complemented by an effective and independent body to oversee the financial regulation of the game. The FA lacks credibility and has proved to be largely ineffective as a governing body. It has not modernised and is not sufficiently independent.”

The recommendations on the manifesto include setting up an “independent regulator or commissioner” and tackling financial disparity throughout the football pyramid.

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"The principle is that we don't trust that football can govern itself and create the fairest deal for all, whether that's the Premier League, EFL clubs, non-League clubs or the fans,” Neville told Sky Sports.

“It has been proven over this past six months that football has struggled to bring everyone together and proven to be incapable over a 25-30 year period of transforming the money in the game into something that works for everybody.

"I want the best Premier League in the world, but I want sustainable football clubs. There is enough money in the game to be able to have an elite Premier League, a sustainable and competitive EFL, money passed down to non-League and grassroots and where fans can get a fair deal.

“That's where an independent regulator, with that spirit at the heart of it, can come in and say 'that's not fair'.”

Along with an independent regulator, the group also outlines plans to amend the power structure in football, the lack of BAME coaches and managers at the top level and the “exploitation” of clubs and fans.

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