This is a real acid test for and of the EFL.
Outside of Derby’s fan base I think there is general acceptance that with the advent of the new ffp rules Derby/Morris made a conscious decision to ignore the rules, choosing instead to embark on a campaign to secure promotion by continued spending. It appears they did so knowing the financial position ( both in general terms, but particularly with regard to ffp limits) it would place the club, but were banking on promotion as the means of “balancing the books” before the day of reckoning arrived.
Unfortunately, the day of reckoning arrived before promotion and while Derby fans are almost brazen about having had one over on the EFL, let’s be honest, the sale of Pride Park was a desperate last ditch measure to save the club from ffp embarrassment and depriving them of the chance of promotion. The irony is, of course, that had they bitten the bullet back then and taken a likely points deduction, while it would have meant them missing out on promotion ( which they did anyway) the consequences would have been less severe than they are now looking. In particular, I wonder whether they would have avoided the EFL looking more closely at their accounting techniques, especially around amortisation?
Reading followed a similar course, and while “punished” by the EFL for their transgressions, appear to be making a mockery of the so called embargo, by being able to recruit loanees who are far better ( and affordable) than anything we, and most championship clubs, could afford to bring in.
That being the case, if Derby are seen to have escaped full punishment, by having points deductions reduced, then not only would it put the EFL’s credibility in the same place as requires a whisk to get out of the pan, but it would throw the financial rules into disarray, as I could understand if other clubs take the view “what’s the point in us complying of other clubs are getting away with it”.