David Gill has been appointed chair of UEFA's licensing committee. Gill's role is to monitor the implementation of UEFA's new Financial Fair Play rules. This, if it already hasn't, will trigger a European wide debate on how a current Manchester United board member can have such power, power that is a clear conflict of interest - especially if Gill performs the role as the game needs it to be.
Manchester United were, and still are, one of the clubs to advocate a limit on spending. United were supported by the majority of Premier League and continental clubs. One of the challenges for Gill in this role is that there is access to the accounts of domestic and European rivals.
Clubs like Chelsea and Manchester City will be concerned about Gill’s new position, however the fact remains that whoever is in this role will have to hit clubs hard that do not comply with the FFP rules if these rules are to work. Equally to suggest that there is any doubt over the fact that teams such as Chelsea, Manchester City, Paris St. Germain, Monaco and even Bayern Munich are not breaking these rules would be absurd. Barcelona and Real Madird are also on thin ice.
The FFP rules are designed to ensure that clubs grow organically, not via shortcuts financed by the absurdly rich that appear to have little knowledge of how to run a football club; case in point Roman Abromovich who has just appointed his tenth manager since 2004.
The reality is that the accusations of a conflict of interest will increase exponentially as Gill's effectiveness in his new role increases. In truth whether an active Board member or not, Gill's heart will remain with United, and even if Gill resigns from the Board he would still have contact. The fact is Manchester United are an extremely well run club that balances a large leveraged debt and success on the field with a commercial department that keeps the club within FFP rules.
This makes Gill the perfect candidate.