A DAY before one of the most important meetings in the sport's history, Super League clubs have been accused of bullying and the Rugby Football League of a dereliction of duty.

With the future of Super League, the Championship and League One up in the air in terms of their structure, the Championship and League One advisory group, which was headed by Bradford Bulls' Andrew Chalmers, held a crucial press conference at Odsal yesterday afternoon in which they made it clear which way they would vote.

Batley Bulldogs chairman Kevin Nicholas, a member of the advisory group, said: "One thing that has come to our attention is that a Championship club have been told that unless they change their stance as to how they will vote that there will be no dual registration next season, they will not be able to use training facilities and there will be no planned friendly.

"For me that is sinking pretty low when we get to that bullying scenario, and that is disgraceful."

York City Knights chairman Jon Flatman revealed: "Some of those calls have overstepped the mark."

The advisory group issued a statement before the meeting which called the RFL and Super League proposal "a rotten solution, negative and defensive, lacking vision and independence".

The advisory group stated: "After discussions with our members, the Championship and League One clubs overwhelmingly intend to vote no to the RFL's resolution at the extraordinary general meeting to be held on Friday, September 14, 2018.

"We are not, however, against change. We are very prepared to work with all stakeholders to deliver a progressive vision for the future in time for any broadcast renegotiation due in 2020.

"The Super League proposal represents an irrevocable and irreversible transfer of authority to a group of private individuals and an abandonment of the wider game.

"The dispute, which is not of our making, is not at the right time (midway through a broadcast cycle) is not discussing the right issues and is publically demonstrating a lack of confidence in the sport.

"Despite assurances, we have been excluded from direct discussions, and now a campaign has emerged, with attempts to pressurise vulnerable clubs into capitulating. As a result, a handful of clubs are undecided how to vote."

The RFL-Super League proposal is for a 12-team Super League with a top-five play-off, the abandonment of the Super 8s and one-up, one down.

The advisory board statement continued: "Like any competition structure, the current format is not perfect but could have been modified to improve it.

"We believe a restoration to a 14-team Super League with an automatic one-up, one-down and a second place play-off, including the 13th-placed Super League club via a Million Pound game, is the correct position.

"The Championship and League One clubs are happy to peg the revenue share of the broadcast revenue so the whole game goes up or down together. The financial proposal put forward for consideration is unviable.

"There is a clear shift in resources, both human and financial, from the RFL to a privately-owned company at the expense of the wider sport.

"All funding restrictions would fall squarely on the RFL, Championship and League One and community game to the point of rendering an increasing number of clubs unviable, and placing the Championship and League One competition formats at risk of failure in the future.

"The RFL-Super League proposal doesn't offer any positive vision for the future for the whole of the game, no unbiased analysis, evidence or rationale for change.

"It is driven by protectionism and vested self-interest, it would reintroduce failed concepts (loop fixtures) and a one-up, one-down format with huge parachute payments distorting the Championship division.

"It doesn't make any sense for the overseas inclusion in the sport for Catalans, Toulouse and Toronto to be on different terms (they do not have a vote)."

Featherstone Rovers chairman Mark Campbell said: "I haven't seen a lot of leadership from the RFL and you need a chairman (of the RFL) to lead.

"We have three tiers of the professional game, and two of them are thriving and we need to work out our own TV deal."

The current TV deal, which runs until December 2021, is worth £40m, with Super League Europe's share being £30m and the RFL, Championship and League One being £10m.

However, if the whole pot is still £40m, Super League Europe's share grows to £32.25m and the RFL, Championship and League One's drops to £7.75m.

Below that is a sliding scale down to where the deal drops to £30m, then the RFL, Championship and League One will get nothing.

Dewsbury Rams chairman Mark Sawyer said of the TV deal: "This is a shocking deal. It is about who is in charge of the steering wheel.

"We know that some of our clubs are incapable of becoming Super League clubs, but this is unviable for not just one or two clubs but for everybody."

Nicholas added: "I find it baffling that the RFL have put forward a proposal where they get £1m less money.

"Does that mean that they have £1 worth of fat that they don't need or does that mean there will be £1m less spent on the grass-roots game?

"There is a lack of appreciation below Super League that they feel that we are not worth talking to."

One ultimate option is that the sport splits below Super League.

Chalmers said: "A split is an option, and when licensing comes in then the drawbridge is up."

Nicholas added: "Do the RFL listen to what the sport says or are they being pressured?

"All these options are bad solutions.

"It is not like a divorce. The RFL is not the enemy but we need to have discussions."

Flatman said: "There has to be a trickle-down process from Super League."

The advisory group revealed that after today's meeting, whichever way the vote goes, they will be in discussion with the RFL, and a statement will be made following that.