2013/14 is the baseline so no one can be judged until next season (dec 14 is the first date any punishments can be handed out). So we could in effect have pushed the wage bill to 60m this summer and as long as it isn't more than 63.9M next season we are still fine because it has to be AND not either or.
If in any of Contract Years 2013/14, 2014/15 and 2015/16 a Club’s aggregated Player Services Costs and Image Contract Payments:
E.18.1. exceed £52m, £56m, or £60m respectively; and
E.18.2. have increased by more than £4m when compared with the previous Contract Year or
by more than £4m, £8m or £12m respectively when compared with Season 2012/13;
then the Club must satisfy the Board that such excess increase as is referred to in E.18.2 arises
as a result of contractual commitments entered into on or before 31 January 2013, and/or that
it has been funded only by Club Own Revenue Uplift and/or profit from player trading as
disclosed in the Club’s Annual Accounts for that Contract Yea
Close but no cigar...it says in the extract you quoted, that all Player Services Costs and Image Contract Payments are compared to the 2012/2013 season, thus, this is the baseline. Clubs have different Official accounts release dates, and it is from these accounts the majority of the investigation will take place, hence the confusion of when the "fines/points deductions" can take place, the FA will know what we are paying each player with signing on fee's, bonuses etc, but they need the financial accounts to see if any uplift in revenue will take care of any overspend.
We and all other PL clubs are being monitored now
, from the appearance, the likes of Soton etc have spent alot more in salaries than they released off their books, maybe they didn't spend the 48M last year so have leeway to spend more before they reach the minimum cap of 52M? Maybe they plan to release players on loan this half of the season, or sale in January?
A club can spend heavily in the first half of the season and be over budget, but correct this in the 2nd half of the season by reducing the Player Services Costs and Image Contract Payments so the net effect is they do not spend over 52M or whatever their budget constraint cost is for the season. This could be risky as like Vaz Te, they might not be able to shift the player out and fall foul.
Finally, the fines & points deductions penalties have not been decided yet I understand, so I am sure there are plenty of legal experts out there who could argue the fact that the punishments were not defined from the outset, hence not legally binding, or it is an unfair hindrance on the clubs growth potential by not signing these players. In Europe, there have already been mutterings from top sports lawyers about unfairness.