Date:Friday January 20 2006
Ex-Leicester City player Mike Newell's revelation that he will name the names of people who have offered him 'bungs' or illegal payments during transfer negotiations may be gaining impetus.
Cardiff City Chief Executive Peter Ridsdale has told the Sunday Mirror he was offered a £300,000 sweetener (which he refused and acted upon) while negotiating a transfer involving Robbie Keane (see Footymad's Cardiff City website).
The more you read and the more you look at the sums of money involved the more you think there should be a full scale Police investigation.
You have to wonder, once more, if the whole game is rotten to the core and if there is any limit to people's greed.
Having the FA conducting enquiries when they have a central vested interest in avoiding any scandal which brings the game into disrepute seems ridiculous.
Everyone at the FA has friends and contacts within the game that have been made over years. How can they be expected or believed to be impartial?.
Yes, they are charged with maintaining the reputation of the game, but how can they be expected to willingly drag it's name through the sort of mud that the Newell scandal will dredge up?.
They may not be able to avoid it, much has already been smeared around, but their desire would surely be to show their 'house' in as clean a light as possible.
There are huge implications, even if it comes as no surprise to anyone. It is already scandalous how much football money falls into the bottomless pockets of football agents.
If those agents are proved to be dishonest then where might all or some of that money go?
Bearing in mind agents can have an interest in many players, would the alleged inclination to be dishonest stop at the idea of rigging a football match?.
The Police have recently been given leads (from a European trial) which may suggest that matches in this country have been rigged.
And, of course, it is the football fan who is betting his hard-earned cash every week on those results just the same as he is funding the agents' cream-off from transfer deals.
It might mean the sort of 'outcry' so mocked in some Leicestershire journalistic quarters but it is high time a genuine attempt was made to make people answer for their dealings.
Then the FA, and indeed FIFA should try to make sure it doesn't happen in future.
Newell, of course, never employed an agent. How on earth did he manage?.
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