Toronto Wolfpack told having rugby league team in Canada makes no commercial sense

TORONTO have been told rugby league believes there is NOTHING to be gained from having a club in North America.

Super League boss Robert Elstone has been carrying out a commercial report into whether the top flight benefits from a presence on the other side of the Atlantic.

Now SunSport has learned that has found the benefits of having a team with the Toronto name are NIL.

And Rugby Football League chairman Simon Johnson has agreed in the same document.

Research was carried out in whether rugby league can tap into a goldmine by having a team in Canada as the Wolfpack fight to stay in Super League.

But the results were far from encouraging. NO huge TV rights, NO potential huge sponsorship, NO sign of billions, or even millions, of dollars coming in.

That would destroy one of Toronto’s main reasons they give as to why they should be voted in at a crunch meeting today.

Despite efforts from the Wolfpack – who brought Sonny Bill Williams back to rugby league – over the past few years, they have not secured a deal and it is believed the conclusion is ‘there is no strategic benefit in attacking the North American market.’

And as prospective owner Carlo LiVolsi prepares to front the other 11 club bosses, Super League executives and powerbrokers at the RFL, he has a job on his hands to prove he is the real deal.

He has already vowed to pay players the wages they are owed and all outstanding debts racked up by former owner David Argyle.

However, it is believed six votes – Elstone, Hull, Hull KR, Castleford, Wakefield and Huddersfield – are against letting them back in.

Leeds, St Helens, Catalans and the RFL are thought to be in favour, leaving Warrington, Wigan and Salford.

Toronto need seven of the 13 to stay in Super League and have been pushing their case in recent days.

They want a share of the central distribution other clubs get, worth about £2 million a year, and only a two-point deduction for pulling out of the 2020 season.

However, LiVolsi is likely to walk away if it is a no.

If they are kicked out, the RFL will then see if they can be saved and take a spot in the Championship or League One.

A Super League fixtures group will then step up work it has done to examine the possibilities of an 11-team competition next season.

That would mean the showpiece Magic Weekend may not happen but one school of thought is having 11 for 2021 and bringing one club up for three years without relegation to boost Super League to 14 from 2024.

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