Premier League clubs have "unanimously agreed" to reject plans put forward by Liverpool and Manchester United for radical changes to the league's structures and finances and instead set up their own review of the game.

The 'Project Big Picture' proposals would see an increase in funds for the 72 clubs in the Football League but also include special voting rights for the top clubs in the Premier League and a reduction of teams in the top flight from 20 to 18.

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The plan has been fronted by EFL chairman Rick Parry and would have included a £250 million bail-out for his clubs, who face acute financial issues due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

But at a meeting on Wednesday of all 20 of the Premier League's clubs, the plans were rejected with a separate, broader-based review by the entire league initiated.

A statement from the Premier League said: "Clubs will work collaboratively, in an open and transparent process, focusing on competition structure, calendar, governance and financial sustainability. This project has the full support of The FA and will include engagement with all relevant stakeholders including fans, government and, of course, the EFL."

It promised financial support for clubs in the EFL, adding: "League One and League Two clubs rely more heavily on matchday revenue and have fewer resources at their disposal than Championship or Premier League clubs and are therefore more at risk, especially at a time when fans are excluded from attending matches.

This offer will consist of grants and interest-free loans totalling a further £50million on top of the £27.2million solidarity payments already advanced to League One and League Two this year, making a total of £77.2million."

Executives from EFL clubs had earlier indicated they were in favour of the plans, with reports on Tuesday evening quoting various representatives.

Peter Ridsdale of Preston North End said there were "no dissenting voices" in the Championship when it came to supporting the broad principles of the proposals, while Brentford released a statement saying:

It is our view a number of the headline proposals are positive and require further debate and we believe the timing is now right to look at developing a new long-term sustainable future for the entire English football pyramid."

Jez Moxey of Burton Albion said that the League One clubs were "unanimous" in supporting them, while Nigel Travis of Leyton Orient suggested that just one League Two club were against the plans.

However, fans' groups were very clear in expressing their opposition.

Additional reporting from Reuters

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