Connect with us

Premier League

Investigation reveals Tottenham broke Premier League agent rules

Tottenham Hotspur have been accused of breaching transfer rules dating back to 2008, during Jermain Defoe’s move to Portsmouth, according to an investigation by The Times

The report suggests that key figures involved in the transfer, including Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy, then-Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp and Defoe, engaged with an unlicensed agent during negotiations.

The Football Association (FA) took no action then, but recent scrutiny has prompted the governing body to consider reviewing the allegations. 

The panel overseeing the arbitration hearing highlighted Mitchell Thomas, a former West Ham United and Tottenham player, as a central figure in the deal. 

Thomas, an unlicensed agent, was listed by the FA in 2008 for operating without a license.

Tottenham chairman Levy reportedly enlisted licensed agent Stuart Peters for representation, but a formal representation contract, a requirement under FA rules, may have been absent. 

The FA regulations at the time explicitly prohibit players and clubs from employing unlicensed agents.

The allegations are serious, and Tottenham could face potential sanctions such as transfer bans, points deductions or even relegation. Agents and players may face warnings, fines or bans.

Based on detailed phone records, the independent arbitration panel concluded in 2010 that Thomas played a role in Defoe’s transfer. 

However, the FA stated that no disciplinary action was taken, citing a lack of relevant documentation. 

Former FA executive team member David Lampitt, who was in charge of financial regulation during that period, did not explain why the matter was not pursued further.

The FA has now indicated a willingness to review the case if new evidence emerges. 

This revelation comes at a time when Manchester City and Chelsea are under investigation for Financial Fair Play breaches.

Tottenham’s situation draws parallels to past cases where clubs faced disciplinary action for similar breaches, such as Luton Town’s points deduction in 2008 and Massimo Cellino’s ban in 2017.

More in Premier League