Football insiders claim world game is ‘endemically corrupt’ in player transfers
In the first of a two-part series looking into alleged corruption in football, the Guardian talks to agents, lawyers and academics close to the biggest deals
A starlet at a Premier League club is to be promoted to the first team. His agent has represented him since the age of 16 and they enjoy a good relationship. Then, the manager informs a different registered intermediary (the official term) the player will be catapulted from earning a few hundred pounds a week into the £20,000-a-week bracket. What else is the intermediary, who does not represent the young hopeful, told?
Dan Chapman, a lawyer and intermediary at Full Contact, a sports law firm, takes up the story. “This manager says: ‘There will be a new contract on the table for him [the player]. It’s massive. That means his agent is going to pick up a nice fee. But what I want is to destabilise the relationship between player and agent. The big agent’s fee will go to you instead.’