Premier League

Tottenham Hotspur become latest Premier League club alleged of breaching transfer rules

Rajarshi ShuklaRajarshi Shukla
November 21 2023
Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

Chelsea and Man City are already under investigation for breaching transfer rule

Tottenham Hotspur are being sued for allegedly breaking transfer regulations when Jermain Defoe moved to Portsmouth in 2008. The Football Association (FA) has stated that it is willing to examine the facts following its initial inaction fifteen years ago.

Spurs may be in trouble as it seems evidence suggests they hired an unregistered agent during negotiations to finalise Defoe’s £7.5 million move to Pompey, according to a Times story.

The FA made the decision not to prosecute Tottenham Hotspur at the time, but now that new information has surfaced, the organisation in charge of overseeing English football has stated it will examine the accusations anew.

Clubs that violate the FA’s agent regulations face point reductions, director suspensions, and transfer bans. Luton Town lost 10 points for violating the agency guidelines in the same year.

‘The case was heard by an independent arbitration panel 15 years ago,’ a spokeswoman for the FA said.

The FA was not a party to the arbitration. It is unclear how much information was shared with the FA at the time, and no disciplinary action was taken. 

‘If there is new evidence which was not available at the time, and which suggests serious breaches of our rules took place, we will review it.’

According to the Times story, Mitchell Thomas, an earlier player for West Ham and Tottenham and a “central figure” in Defoe’s move to Portsmouth, was acting without a licence at the time.

Defoe, then-Spurs coach Harry Redknapp, and Tottenham Hotspur owner Daniel Levy are alleged to have interacted with Thomas during the transaction.

At the time, and to this day, FA regulations prohibit players and clubs from using unregistered agents in order to finalise transfer transactions.

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