Sam Allardyce tarnishes the name of the Premier League
An undercover operation from British daily, The Telegraph this week exposing Sam Allardyce via a secret recording has led to a shock-wave in the English game. Allardyce was caught on camera agreeing to help individuals apparently representing a Far East consortium to help profit from Premier League transfer deals. Inevitably his short (67 days) tenure as England manager came to an end. An unpleasant scandal for the FA who surely must have had suspicions about the case upon offering Allardyce the position. Back in 2006 current affairs investigation programme Panorama already exposed how money was being made illicitly via the sale of Premier League players.
So much money leaks out of football as a result of transfers and this is not just a phenomenon in England but happens everywhere and this is prevalent in the Spanish game too. The impact from the latest scandal affecting the English game is that much greater as it involves an individual who has made a recent career as a coach-manager figure. That role offers absolute power, the person who makes the key player acquisition, decisions but can lead to the creation of a business on the side employing one's son, in-law's...and forces the new signings to use your business service. Such practice was allegedly commonplace in the past with Brian Clough and George Graham linked with such activity.
Gary Lineker, a respected voice within the game has called for a police investigation. The Telegraph operation has revealed that at least ten managers and many agents are connected with cases of corruption. This situation is apparently well known and has always been dealt with in hushed tones but it would appear that the time has come to address the malaise. The fallout is not good for the FA or Premier League (and will have been poorly received by it's huge global network of sponsors). This particular case is even more hard-hitting as it directly involves the emblematic figure that is the national team coach. Let's hope this brings an end these practices and hope that the ripple effect reaches Spanish football too.
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