A SUPPORTERS group have asked the Welsh Rugby Union to "redress" £10million of extra spending on the Dragons when they were owned by the governing body.

The Joint Supporters Group, who represent the official supporters’ groups of the Dragons, Scarlets, Ospreys and Cardiff, have written to new Union chief executive Abi Tierney.

A wide-ranging letter raises issues affecting the professional clubs, who continue to cut costs with the risk of losing top talent.

The JSG also wants an investigation into how the Dragons - who were taken into private ownership by chairman David Buttress, David Wright and Hoyoung Huh last summer - received extra funds.

South Wales Argus: The Dragons celebrate victory over the Scarlets on New Year's DayThe Dragons celebrate victory over the Scarlets on New Year's Day (Image: Huw Evans Agency)

"It has been noted that over £10million of additional WRU funds were spent on Dragons RFC whilst owned by the WRU between 2017 and 2023," read the letter.

"In 2017 it was agreed that Dragons RFC would be run as a cost-neutral operation by the WRU and every additional pound spent on them would be reciprocated to the other three professional clubs, who remained in private ownership.

"We urge the WRU to look at the funding of the Dragons against the commitment to equitable spending for the other three teams.

"We would like to see a plan to redress this situation with an explanation of how it was allowed to happen."

The Dragons, who bought Rodney Parade as part of the deal with the WRU, are now in the same boat as their three rivals and are impacted by a raft of financial issues.

The JSG raises the £20million loan taken out during the coronavirus pandemic that was negotiated by the WRU, which will be repaid over 20 years.

"I am sure you are aware of the significantly more favourable terms that clubs in England, Scotland and Ireland have been offered, allowing them to rebuild post-Covid.

"Clubs in Wales have made significant cuts to their cost base and are still struggling to survive due to the burden of repaying the loan at 8.25 per cent, well above the 2 per cent rates elsewhere.

"We believe the WRU need to urgently challenge this profiteering from Welsh Government and as a minimum renegotiate terms in line with our English counterparts.

With the quartet cutting budgets and operating with a £4.5million salary cap next season, the supporters ask for a rethink of WRU funding.

"We understand that the payment for services is due to reduce significantly from £23.5m to £13.5m next season, already well below pre-Covid levels of around £27m.

"All the while our Scottish and Irish counterparts continue to increase investment into their supply chain, the professional clubs, to help enable club and international success.

"As a minimum we fell that the £23.5m should be guaranteed for 2024/25, with a view of growing this to higher levels over the remaining years of the framework agreement."

The latter also asks the Union to give supporters "clarity on its financial strategy".