Saracens face Premiership relegation threat over salary cap

Saracens are facing relegation from the Premiership if they are found to have breached the salary cap again.

The defending champions received a 35-point deduction and a £5.3m fine in November, having broken the cap for the past three seasons.

However, there is widespread belief they will once more struggle to get under the £7m limit this season.

The BBC has learned Saracens have been told to comply with the rules immediately or face relegation.

The bosses of the top-flight clubs met at a Premiership Rugby board meeting in London on Tuesday.

It was decided that unless Saracens could prove their compliance, they would face the unprecedented step of dropping into the second tier.

Although Saracens interim chief executive Edward Griffiths revealed to the BBC earlier this month that the club may need to trim their squad to fit under the cap, no players have yet been released.

The contract season has already run for seven months – since the start of July – with all the money paid to players who have featured for the club during that period counting towards the cap.

Furthermore, any money paid as compensation to players for cutting short contracts would also be included in the wage bill.

Meanwhile, Premiership Rugby announced last month a comprehensive review of the current salary cap regulations, conducted by former government minister Lord Myners.

Saracens have been contacted for comment.

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