BBC BLOGS - David Bond
« Previous | Main | Next »

Redknapp cleared but football remains on trial

Post categories:

David Bond | 15:28 UK time, Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Even before Harry Redknapp was cleared of all charges in his tax evasion trial today, the Redknapp for England bandwagon was up and running.

As the outstanding home grown manager in the Premier League and now with no legal or ethical obstacle to him taking the most high profile job in the English game, that campaign is certain to gather pace in the coming days and weeks.

Two former England managers - Sven Goran Eriksson and Graham Taylor - have already endorsed Redknapp's credentials to take over from Fabio Capello in the wake of the verdicts from Southwark Crown Court.

And in a delicious piece of timing that the Football Association is so adept at delivering, as Redknapp was giving his heartfelt reaction to being cleared, Capello was at Wembley discussing the fallout from the John Terry captaincy affair with his FA bosses.

Redknapp

Harry Redknapp (centre) was cleared by the jury at Southwark Crown Court of tax evasion charge and is now favourite to become the new England manager in the summer. Photo: Getty 

I'm told that if the Italian refuses to back down and insists on Terry remaining as his captain - despite his upcoming trial for allegedly racially abusing Anton Ferdinand - then that could lead to an irreparable breakdown in his relationship with the FA.

But the far more likely outcome remains an uneasy truce with FA chairman David Bernstein and Capello until after Euro 2012 when the manager's £6m-a-year contract expires.

All of which would give the FA a bit of breathing space to consider their options and to work out how to extract Redknapp from the remaining two years on his Spurs contract.

As you would expect, Tottenham issued a supportive statement following the verdicts this afternoon but unofficially their line remains as it has always been - they will deal with the possibility of losing their highly-rated manager to England as and when it arises.

But you could see an elegant situation developing where Redknapp guides Spurs to their highest finish in the Premier League for decades before negotiating his departure for a job he has always coveted.

Officially the FA says it hasn't started discussing possible replacements for Capello. It insists it will only do so once the European Championship is out of the way.

That seems extremely unlikely and it is pushing credibility to ask us to believe that Bernstein and senior executives weren't watching developments at Southwark Crown Court today with great interest.

Apart from anything else, the case had potential to do further damage to English football's already tarnished reputation for financial probity.

Offshore bank accounts, tax fiddling and unofficial loans do not make great reading for a sport which is still struggling to cope with its commercial success.

As Judge Anthony Leonard put it yesterday, the growing wealth in the game has led some to conclude that football has "rather lost its way".

Guilty verdicts for Redknapp and his former chairman at Portsmouth Milan Mandaric would have only added to the calls for tighter regulation - starting at the FA where the government would like to see a tougher licensing system for clubs.

As it is Mandaric, Redknapp and the game walk free with their names cleared and serious questions instead being asked about the lengthy and costly investigations which led them to the dock.

Following the verdicts reporting restrictions on another case involving Mandaric and ex-Portsmouth chief executive Peter Storrie were lifted.

Both men were cleared of tax evasion relating to the transfers of Amdy Faye and Eyal Berkovic last year.

Having spent millions of pounds investigating football, HM Revenue and Customs have suffered a couple of heavy defeats here.

But it is even worse when you consider these cases were the end product of a six-year inquiry into football's financial affairs which all started with a Premier League investigation into irregularities in big money transfers.

The Quest probe led by former Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir John Stevens found that 17 transfers involving five clubs were suspicious but were unable to make anything serious stick against any of the parties involved.

That inquiry sparked a separate police investigation by the City of London economic crime unit called Operation Apprentice.

Several high profile figures in the game including Karren Brady and David Gold, then running Birmingham, were arrested.

At that point the focus was on bungs involving the agent Willy McKay. But again nothing could be proved and all cases were quietly dropped.

Eventually the evidence was handed over to HMRC who then tried to pursue Redknapp and Mandaric for tax evasion.

Today the City of London police and HMRC issued statements defending their actions. HMRC said they had no regrets about pursuing the cases arguing that they will continue to target offshore tax havens.

But at the end of such a long process did they simply bungle the investigations? Or should we conclude that football is free of corruption?

Despite Redknapp and Mandaric being cleared, I'm afraid the jury's still out on that one.

Update: Following the meeting with FA chairman David Bernstein and general secretary Alex Horne at Wembley, Capello resigned his post later on Wednesday.

The FA said in a statement: "The discussions focused on the FA Board's decision to remove the England team captaincy from John Terry, and Fabio Capello's response through an Italian broadcast interview."

 

Comments

Page 1 of 2

  • Comment number 1.

    This is an utterly banal regurgitation of the lowest order.

    Come on, David... If you can't give us some meat, then at least give us some news or some insightful analysis.

    I expect to get better than this down the Pub!

  • Comment number 2.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 3.

    OK, why couldn't the Crown answer the simple question-why should two people who've paid millions in tax connive in such an elaborate ruse for the saving of a few thousand? Even an Arsenal fan on the jury would have said that, without a staisfactory explanation thereof, beyond a reasonable doubt isn't even in the squad of 25 for the season.

    Seriously, what a load of cobblers this blog is;all those enquiries & one after another-can't make charges stick. Ever thought the police just wanted the overtime all along?

    Come on, how many times have we found corruption in their ranks? And how many times in football in comparison?

    Not to mention the fact that any self-respecting British PM has blind trusts working offshore for them-do we therefore assume THEIR integrity must automatically be questioned as well?

    Sorry, this whole thing has been a total waste of public money. If they'd charged 'Arry with mangling the Queen's English, there might be some justification for all the fuss & expense, but not on this pathetic shred of suspicion.

  • Comment number 4.

    Was the detective Harry complained about "staring " in the court the same senior detective that broke into his house (with the Sun reporters in tow)? (The police had to pay Harry damages.) Was Harry's phone hacked by Beasly while working for the News Of The World? Would the police declare this if it was? How much did this fiasco of a trial cost the British taxpayer?

  • Comment number 5.

    Harry for England? not a chance! this is the FA we're talking about here remember! would bet my house on it.

  • Comment number 6.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 7.

    Was it a waste of time? No, HMRC may not have been successful but that is never going to happen everytime a case appears before the courts.

    Individual cases have to be challenged and if necessary action taken, that is how national and local gvernment departments operate. It serves two purposes, establishing the law, therefore setting precedent and it clearly sends a message to those that try to avoid taxation.

    Was it costly? Of course it was, any issue reaching a court will be costly but long term it will prove to have saved money.

  • Comment number 8.

    This article seems to reiterate that which was already known. Is there then some reason for its publication which is too difficult to see?

  • Comment number 9.

    Isnt it Ironic that HMC having failed to secure a conviction against the men in charge of my beloved POMPEY for many years should now in 12 days time close my club down for unpaid taxes. Having taken in the last 10 years over 200 million in Tax from my club Less than 1% of total tax paid during this period is what they are now pursuing via liquidation.

    Mr Rednapp said he has paid over 4 million in taxes during this time, 4 million how much was that paid by POMPEY?

    How many players, chief execs and agents have Pompey made into millionaires ( or added to their already considerable bank balances) what chance do you think any of them will contact the PFC trust and help contribute to saving the club from extinction?

    Do you know if every player/agent/manager owner and RECIEVER appointed who made over 1 million pounds from Pompey duroing this time paid 10k each the club would not fold.

    But then I guess none of them will feel they have any moral obligation to help and as always it is the fans who pay in more ways than one!!!

  • Comment number 10.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 11.

    come on david, they have both been cleared by jury after 5 years of persecution by hmrc and sections of the media so why the blog. top pro footballers have been useing offstore accounts to stash away fortunes to save tax on their "image rights" and 'arrys 200 grand is chicken feed to what rooney and others have salted away for their pension funds so i think that this particular topic should be put to rest, after all it's gone on longer than some soaps.

  • Comment number 12.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 13.

    I'd just like to be the first one to mention the Suarez - Evra affair.

    Going to read the blog now

  • Comment number 14.

    Gooders
    @9

    Pompey is a club who HMRC are currently looking at, not specifically aiming at Pompey but using them as an example, they are currently at the court stage for several issues.

  • Comment number 15.

    Why is 'the outstanding home grown manager in the Premier League' always the guy whose team is nearest the top of the Premiership in the week when the current national manager is about to be replaced?

    Not saying he wouldn't do a good job, but there never seems to be any extended analysis of what qualities might actually be needed to be a successful national manager, although there is always plenty of analysis about what the previous guy did wrong.

  • Comment number 16.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 17.

    Londoner in exile returns
    @14

    No they are asking for the court to close POMPEY down for 2 reasons only.

    Failure to pay the last 2 tax bills totalling just over 1.6 million pounds.

  • Comment number 18.

    @ POlar

    Come, come... Your not expecting Mr Bond to analyse something are you????

    That would require him to be positive, thoughtful and imaginative all at the same time!

  • Comment number 19.

    Apologies.... You're not expecting Mr Bond to analyse something are you????

  • Comment number 20.

    3.
    At 17:26 8th Feb 2012, kickoutthejams wrote:

    OK, why couldn't the Crown answer the simple question-why should two people who've paid millions in tax connive in such an elaborate ruse for the saving of a few thousand?
    _______________________________

    It is very easy to open a bank account or multiple accounts under a pseudonym. You could presume that one was found , but how many more were not found ?

  • Comment number 21.

    What I'd like to know is how much the trial cost, how much was the alleged tax evasion and who will pay the cost of the trial.

    No, I won't ask about how multinationals decide to pay their taxes, when they decide to let the Inland Revenue if they pay, what they pay and when they'll pay it. Because that's serious stuff and this is just a silly, little, football blog with no degrees in Oxford.

  • Comment number 22.

    Is it any wonder that Portsmouth are so close to liquidation?

  • Comment number 23.

    #18 KnuttyBoy - Tad harsh, maybe, but got me laughing anyway.

    Wow, the legal department must be busy on this thread tonight.

    I'll try re-writing my first comment in a different way.

    I don't know the difference between legal tax avoidance using offshore accounts and illegal offshore tax avoidance using offshore accounts. There is clearly a difference and Mr. Redknapp and Mr. Mandaric have been cleared of any wrong-doing.

    However, it's also not been understood, or not explained very well, by the media, who are more interested in what this all means for Harry's chances of getting the England job.

    Threrefore, it seems a little pointless to write a whole blog inviting readers to speculate whether "at the end of such a long process did they simply bungle the investigations? Or should we conclude that football is free of corruption?"

    That's what journalists are supposed to find out and tell us, not vice versa.

  • Comment number 24.

    The whole case stinks to high heaven.
    An 'investment' was put into an offshore account set up by 'arry, yet this wasn't a payment of any kind, so no tax needed to be paid.
    Really?
    I mean, REALLY??????????

    All this case has proven is what we all already knew, HMRC are inept and if you can afford the best lwayers, you can get off practically any charge.

    Oh, and 'arry is a liar too, that was also proven, it's just that the jury decided to believe that he lied to a journalist and not the taxman.


    BTW I haven't said anything offensive, libelous or anything else that would make this post worthy of removal, but I bet it's moderated within an hour.

  • Comment number 25.

    23.
    At 19:25 8th Feb 2012, P0lar wrote:

    Mr. Redknapp and Mr. Mandaric have been cleared of any wrong-doing.
    _____________________________________

    But now they have to pay back dated tax !
    So they did owe tax from un-declared accounts, but were not prosecuted for tax evasion, could anyone explain why ?

  • Comment number 26.

    #21 Reds19

    I can answer your questions...........

    How much the trial cost? - Lots.

    How much was the alleged tax evasion? - A lot to normal folk, peanuts to Premiership types, peanuts compared to the cost of the trial.

    Who will pay the cost of the trial? - We will.

  • Comment number 27.

    Gooders
    @17

    Pompey are a test case for HMRC, far more important than the monies owed by Pompey alone.

    HMRC are seeking a change to the ruling involving preferential creditors in football.

    Pompey's problems are not the result of HMRC action, they are the result of the wrong people gaining control of a club, If the finger needs pointing, direct it towards the FA and their 'fit and proper persons test' which is a disgrace.

    Throughout the whole sorry affair the FA stood by and watched a club with a long history disintergrate.

  • Comment number 28.

    David - in Scotland its Willie with an 'ie' and not Willy with a 'y' at the end. Honestly, you'd think a well travelled guy like yourself would know this. As bad as the Sky commentators pronouncing the Sunderland player James McClean as James McCleen!

  • Comment number 29.

    Talking about good analysis................

    "the far more likely outcome remains an uneasy truce with FA chairman David Bernstein and Capello until after Euro 2012 when the manager's £6m-a-year contract expires."

  • Comment number 30.

    #26, P0lar,

    thanks for solving my enigmas.
    So, I was right in the guesses I couldn't believe.

    Don't bother about the questions that have real meaning in terms of tax evasion. That's really for clever guys needed by many corporations because they know when to discuss with key other people when to open the little window in the law and when to evade tax big time. We can't comprehend that really because we're poor, football folk.

  • Comment number 31.

    Repo
    @25

    For the defence the case revolved around the wording, to you or I a gift, which is also taxable or in this case, a contractual misunderstanding, relating to bonuses. Yes it was paid into an overseas account, which was forgotten or it's importance was not recognised by HR.

    The case was not about any monies that may be owed to HMRC, it needed to be decided if there was a deliberate attempt to avoid taxation. Quite clearly the defendants cases were stronger than the prosecution. It was almost impossible to prove that two people conspired to avoid taxation.

  • Comment number 32.

    As a Spurs fan i would like to say, that Harry Redknapp is wildly over-rated as a manager, he doesn't really have the right credentials for international management, he'd be my fourth or fifth choice for the England vacancy.

    But i actually reckon Steve Bruce could do an effective job for Tottenham, if we can't land Mourinho.

  • Comment number 33.

    reds 19


    People with less money than these two do it as well, only when discovered they normally pay it back without further action.

    HMRC had to pursue the case, yes these two may have had a fantastic defence team but that is what money buys you and it is obviously money well spent for them.

  • Comment number 34.

    #32, Theophane,

    I'd vote for Sven, personally.
    Any interesting weather girls out there?
    If yes, he might be the Press favourite too.

  • Comment number 35.

    #33, Londoner in exile returns,

    you just stopped me philosophising on taxation.
    To be more precise, I had a big question mark bubbling and laughing at my expense in my mind:

    Is it possible to have a big bank in England that could have paid to its director a bigger bonus than what they paid for taxes to the Inland Revenue?

    I promise: I'm not a leftist, I'm not a tax evador, I'm not an extremist and I'm not a communist.

  • Comment number 36.

    #32.
    At 19:57 8th Feb 2012, Theophane wrote:

    As a Spurs fan i would like to say, that Harry Redknapp is wildly over-rated as a manager, he doesn't really have the right credentials for international management, he'd be my fourth or fifth choice for the England vacancy.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    A nice try, but you should know that the authorities and media only take notice these days if you say things on Twitter.

    Anyway, do you think Harry will want to take the England job when Spurs are having such a good season?

    Also, if he goes now, won't he miss out on a % for Gareth Bale going to Spain?

  • Comment number 37.

    On the matter of 'football on trial' etc, the problem is all this ridiculous money washing around in the game. Not long ago it seemed to be only basketball that had million dollar players and salaries, but then there was golf and tennis, American football etc. It isn't rocket science, obviously; sport is used to sell hamburgers, beer, cars, gadgets, fizzy drinks, crisps and all the rest of it. The bulk of players' loopy salaries comes from the advertising revenue that top sport can generate - but i would argue that in fact even the best players should not be earning very much more than the police who are employed to look after the crowd. More - yes. Much more - no.

  • Comment number 38.

    POLar
    @36
    Also, if he goes now, won't he miss out on a % for Gareth Bale going to Spain?

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Nice one.

  • Comment number 39.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 40.

    In compassion to Spurs, I'd like to reiterate that 'Arry is a very bad manager, one dimensional, has no international experience, is terrible in man-management and would be a really bad choice for England.

    Why haven't we learned what compensation they gave to Capelo for the pleasure to back-stab him?

  • Comment number 41.

    reds 19
    @35

    The answer to the question and it would not have to be a bank is yes. Are you suggesting some type of fraud. hahaha

    You could bet your life they would investigate eventually but if there were contracts drawn there is little that could be done. In fact i gaurantee it has happened in smaller business ventures.

  • Comment number 42.

    #20

    And how do YOU know?! It is in fact quite hard to do that here & there's not a shred of evidence to show any other overseas accounts were set up.

    #37

    Why?

    Do the police provide entertainment to 40-70,000 every week & to countless millions on TV? Do You? Do I?

    No-and that's why neither of us are earning telephone number salaries.

    All the big American sports have had massively-salaried stars(proportionately to the average working man,that is)for at least the last 40 years, and none of them seems to've been ruined in the process.

  • Comment number 43.

    No doubt the FA will make the proviso to the new manager that John Terry is not to be selected in any squad, guilty until proved innocent.

  • Comment number 44.

    Personally, I believe Redknapp would be silly to even consider taking the England job. There was a time when you could genuinely be proud in being involved with the England national team but that was many years ago; at least 20 years ago as a matter of fact.

    But now, the England managerial position is the bane of the career of any manager who goes near it. It doesn't matter how good they are or may have been; Capello and Eriksson are prime examples of that. No matter how much people may talk up the 'pride' and 'honour' that comes with the post, it's still the equivalent of being a carpenter and having to work with the worst quality wood, for example.

    It doesn't matter that the manager is not English. It also doesn't matter that there were clearly communication and cultural barriers between Capello and the players. The simple truth is that the current crop of England's so-called 'golden generation' are not fit for football at the truly highest level and never were to be fair.

    It's a blessing for England that they're all nearing the end of their careers and are giving way for genuinely gifted players such as Jack Wilshere.

    But even then, as far as I can see, no manager coming into the post within the next 5-10 years is going to enjoy much relative success. The FA are no good. The players are self-serving and also no good. And most of all, the footballing culture in England is no good. Talk all you want about it being the 'best league in the world'. But from what football I see in other countries, I just don't buy into that argument.

    When England play even the weak international sides it's clear to see that they are well behind the rest of the world when it comes to technical ability and collective efforts.

    So as long as the general football philosophy in this country remains 'kick and rush' and English players continue to be bred following this philosophy, then the country is going nowhere as far as I'm concerned. It doesn't matter who is managing the country; it really doesn't.

  • Comment number 45.

    I would not touch Redknapp with a 12 foot barge pole, I mean the man has admitted he is unable to write out a team sheet!

  • Comment number 46.

    kickoutthejams, #40;

    Alright, you don't go along with the police example. Why though should any footballer earn more than a soldier who is risking life and limb on a daily basis? Or more than, say, a surgeon who is saving lives? Or even a politician (i don't believe they're all crooks), who makes decisions about government with 'life or death' or other major implications for thousands if not millions of people - for instance?

  • Comment number 47.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 48.

    Theophane#46

    I think football, like it or not, is in the ENTERTAINMENT business, and that is the difference, morally correct or otherwise.

    Going back a long way, to 1960 to be precise, there was a maximum wage in force in football & even the England captain could only earn £25 a week, at a point when £15 a week was a good wage.

    And, late that year, Patrick McGoohan raised just a few eyebrows when the papers revealed Lew Grade @ ATV was paying him £1,000 a WEEK for being Danger Man.

    Half a Century on, things have rather changed, but as long as football sees and sells itself as part of the entertainments industry, those perceived injustices of yours will persist, because market forces rather demand we, the great public, still want to be entertained and have our bread and circuses.

    Christ knows what this has to do with 'Arry Boy, but it has livened up the thread's intellectual quotient considerably!

  • Comment number 49.

    further to 46;

    This discussion is academic, i realise - footballers aren't about to accept pay cuts, and they wouldn't be expected to. But the question is, have they fully grasped the responsibility that comes with their fame and fortune - to be good role models to the children who look up to them? Some do, but others clearly don't. I'm not saying anything new, but actually i think from this point of view the FA have got England managers' appointments wrong in recent years. In fact, i think Harry Redknapp could bring about very significant improvement.

  • Comment number 50.

    kickout the jams
    @42
    And how do YOU know?! It is in fact quite hard to do that here & there's not a shred of evidence to show any other overseas accounts were set up.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In fact the only reason there is no evidence, is the fact we do not have access to all the countries and the accounts.

    An example: It is only in the past year where we have reached an agreement with the Swiss to ensure taxation can be collected on accounts held by British nationals who have accounts in Switzerland. HMRC will never know the account holders details the will basically receive the money owed.

    That is the reason we will never know for sure but it is impossible to think that they do not exist for sure.

  • Comment number 51.

    kickoutthejams, 48;

    I agree football is entertainment. But where, for example, musicians have undeniably gone, in terms of 'sex, drugs and rock n' roll', football must not follow, imo.

  • Comment number 52.

    42.
    At 20:32 8th Feb 2012, kickoutthejams wrote:

    #20

    And how do YOU know?! It is in fact quite hard to do that here & there's not a shred of evidence to show any other overseas accounts were set up.
    __________________________
    I dont know, that is why I said "presume".

    Also it is very easy to set up a secret account that is almost impossible to trace, you only need the cash and an address.
    I do believe someone opened one once in their dogs name :)

  • Comment number 53.

    ...what i mean is, i know football HAS followed, but it that is a SAD fact.

  • Comment number 54.

    Tell you what, too, do you think tonight's meeting would've had a different outcome if 'Arry hadn't been acquitted this morning?

    Because you & I all know who the media want now for the England job, don't we?

    Honest 'Arry-as endorsed by Southwark Crown Court!

  • Comment number 55.

    54.
    At 21:11 8th Feb 2012, kickoutthejams wrote:

    Because you & I all know who the media want now for the England job, don't we?
    ______________________________

    If Harry gets the job all the European national coaches will be happy. They think he is very naive tactically when playing outside the EPL.

  • Comment number 56.

    No explanation as to why my post was removed. Is this because Mr. Bond has been exposed as wasting more of our tax payers money than Redknapp?

  • Comment number 57.

    Really don't know why they bother bringing these types of flimsy evidence cases to court? I mean Harry just passed the buck onto his accountant, said he earns a fortune each week, so why bother to cheat the taxman? An obvious waste of public funds it seems. Why didn't they just tax him on the newly found monies, and be done with it? Have these prosecuters removed their Ken Dodd posters from their walls, or do they not care about precedent.
    On to a more footballing theme. I really like Harry, he's a lovely person...But, he is definitely not England manager material IMHO. Now, if we could get Jose from Madrid, that would be great. But, i would be happy with Martin O'Neil also. It's going to be an interesting/important time for English football.


    When you look at Mr Ken Dodds case a few years back

  • Comment number 58.

    I don't get to many Premiership games, but i went to see Peter Reid's Sunderland beat Harry Redknapp's West Ham at Upton Park in January 2001, just after Sven's appointment. Sven came to that game, his first as England manager, precisely because Redknapp had built such an exciting West Ham side. To me he was already first choice then. I can't really understand the FA's failure to give it to him before now.

  • Comment number 59.

    « Previous | Main
    Redknapp cleared but football remains on trial
    Comments

    Share this page
    4ShareFacebookTwitter.Post categories: Football

    David Bond | 15:28 UK time, Wednesday, 8 February 2012
    Even before Harry Redknapp was cleared of all charges in his tax evasion trial today, the Redknapp for England bandwagon was up and running.

    As the outstanding home grown manager in the Premier League and now with no legal or ethical obstacle to him taking the most high profile job in the English game, that campaign is certain to gather pace in the coming days and weeks.

    Two former England managers - Sven Goran Eriksson and Graham Taylor - have already endorsed Redknapp's credentials to take over from Fabio Capello in the wake of the verdicts from Southwark Crown Court.

    And in a delicious piece of timing which the Football Association is so adept at delivering, as Redknapp was giving his heartfelt reaction to being cleared, Capello was at Wembley thought to be discussing the fallout from the John Terry captaincy affair with his FA bosses.


    Harry Redknapp (centre) was cleared by the jury at Southwark Crown Court of tax evasion charge and is now favourite to become the new England manager in the summer. Photo: Getty
    I'm told that if the Italian refuses to back down and insists on Terry remaining as his captain - despite his upcoming trial for allegedly racially abusing Anton Ferdinand - then that could lead to an irreparable breakdown in his relationship with the FA.

    'But the far more likely outcome remains an uneasy truce with FA chairman David Bernstein and Capello until after Euro 2012 when the manager's £6m-a-year contract expires.'

    Wrong again, Mr Bond.

  • Comment number 60.

    @55

    Yeh he got his tactics completely wrong against ac and inter Milan 2 years ago, didn't he. Anyone with a decent tactical brain wouldve won spurs the champions league!

  • Comment number 61.

    But the far more likely outcome remains an uneasy truce with FA chairman David Bernstein and Capello until after Euro 2012 when the manager's £6m-a-year contract expires.

    -

    Wrong again Mr Bond.

  • Comment number 62.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 63.

    Now, how are the FA gonna sweeten Spurs & Mr Levy?

    Remember, them Olympics.

    Anyone want to bet that the "sporting legacy" is kicked into touch come next September, because them there Olympics will then be OVER, and it'll be followed by an announcement before Xmas that Spurs and West Ham are sharing it now to maximise its' capacity for the greater majority of people?

    None of this will leak out, because the meninsuits have already been discussing it with the Government since Sunday. Just the timing to be smoothed out and.........

    You heard it here first

  • Comment number 64.

    John Terry for the England job in a player+captain+manager role?

  • Comment number 65.

    The jury is still certainly out. However with regard to alleged financial irregularities, and the like, I fear the horse has long since bolted.

    Perhaps the decision to ban Terry Venables from company directorships for seven years represented the high water mark?

    HMRC really shot itself in the foot, whatever spin it attempts to put on today's verdicts. Hopefully serious questions will be asked but I won't be holding my breath.

    I couldn't agree more with His Honour Judge Leonard that some may think that football has "rather lost its way". I think it's been wandering aimlessly for years.

    The root cause is money and the greed associated with it. I'm sorry but many footballers are grossly overpaid. This in turn brings a misplaced sense of entitlement and superiority. With that comes risk taking in pursuit of inflated rewards.

    No problems in American sport! Well there were the BALCO and Major League Baseball scandals for a start. More recently the NBA lockout.

    The situation won't change in professional football until there exists a collective will to change it. For as long as some Premier League supporters continue paying £35 plus for the cheapest tickets at many grounds, football will never regain any sense of commercial sanity.

    We're no longer talking about footballers detaching themselves from the butcher, the baker and candlestick maker. An average Premier League footballer is now earning more than an NHS surgeon, let alone the other professional medical staff.

    Let's not forget Gordon Taylor the PFA chief. The last time I looked he was earning £984,000 pa. Not bad for a trade union rep!

    But hey, that's entertainment!

  • Comment number 66.

    If Harry gets brought up on any further charges for anything whatsoever during his time for England, the FA will now have to follow their own precedent and order him to leave his scarf and overcoat in the dressing room to show how strong and decisive they all are in dealing with such sensitive matters.

    P. S. David - Did you really just go on TV and say that the FA were initially prepared to compromise as long as Capello backed down? Does that honestly make any sense to you, even when you were saying it out loud?

  • Comment number 67.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 68.

    David in your last article you claimed FC wouldn't resign so he "wouldn't risk losing the money due to him for the remainder of his contract."

    Do you actually know anything about football? FC has shown he is a man of integrity unlike the FA & you.

  • Comment number 69.

    #64

    NICE!

    I want Becks- 'cos Posh can then design a really fabio(geddit!!) noo kit and select the team as well on the basis of who models it best.

    Could it really be any worse than what's passed as selection processes these last 30 years? After all, think of the footballers from that era she COULD have married instead-maybe she's actually a natural for the job!

  • Comment number 70.

    #69, kickoutthejams,

    I'd recommend Becks and Co for the F.A. role, especially with Olympics around.

  • Comment number 71.

    63.
    At 21:37 8th Feb 2012, kickoutthejams wrote:

    Now, how are the FA gonna sweeten Spurs & Mr Levy?

    Remember, them Olympics.

    ============================================

    Lovely bit of conspiracy theory there. And a superb example of how to construct the perfect speculative news story by combining the Premiership, the Euros and the Olympic Stadium with absolutely no concrete evidence required. Now you'll have to get commission when the BBC uses it for one of their blogs.

  • Comment number 72.

    60.
    At 21:33 8th Feb 2012, Bcfctim wrote:

    Anyone with a decent tactical brain wouldve won spurs the champions league!
    ________________________________________

    I agree 100%
    Mourinho did it with Porto on a fraction of the Spurs budget

  • Comment number 73.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 74.

    Murinho for England?

  • Comment number 75.

    The FA are to make the proviso to the next potential manager that Terry will not be selected for any England squad during their tenure. I am not sure that is really fair.

  • Comment number 76.

    #71

    Don't worry, the e-cheque's winging my way as we speak!!!!!!

    Incidentally, does anyone else think that photo of Fabio on the home page is a dead ringer for Alexandre the Meercat?!

  • Comment number 77.

    74.
    At 22:08 8th Feb 2012, Reds19 wrote:

    Murinho for England?
    _____________________________

    If he does take the job John Terry will be reinstated as captain :)

  • Comment number 78.

    Sorry!

    Make that the FOOTBALL home page-top left!!

    Uncanny!

  • Comment number 79.

    Gooders, you are so right. And on the back of this is the news that he could change jobs. Amazing

  • Comment number 80.

    So, next time England fails in a football tournament, we remember: bad fish always stinks more at the head.

  • Comment number 81.

    @72

    Yes, but that was a year in which none of the european powerhouses (the likes of man u barca real Madrid Milan) really performed.

  • Comment number 82.

    This writing you are all doing is pointless. David Bond is a nerd who has seen as much sporting competition as I have the Holy Grail. English football is a spent force. Over rated players who would not make it into the top teams in the world. A belief that an English Manager will save all for you. If Fabio Capello who has one of the best pedigrees in the game cannot sort out the mess that is the English Football team, how would a guy that has an FA cup to his name do any better. Are English football fans so small minded that they think it will make you a power in football again? Yes you are, if people can boo Patrice Evra for reporting Luis Suarez for Racialy abusing him, then there is not hope for much else around football. I personally hope England get trounced out of the Euros. Just like the World Cup in South Africa. Just so that once again the footballing clowns that are involved from the Directors of the FA to the yobs in the stands can see what a farce your beloved game has become. I will hazard my life's earnings that I will never see an England team win a major trophy. That's down to the fact that this country has no concept of the meaning team. And until you do none of this drivel that Bond or you speaks makes any difference.

  • Comment number 83.

    #1 KnuttyBoy

    I have just come back from the pub and I did indeed get a lot better than this. But I am afraid I don't have the funds that would be required to fight the inevitable defamation/libel cases that would inevitably follow were I to publish them on here, let alone get past the moderators.

  • Comment number 84.

    NorthLondonCockerel
    @65
    We're no longer talking about footballers detaching themselves from the butcher, the baker and candlestick maker. An average Premier League footballer is now earning more than an NHS surgeon, let alone the other professional medical staff.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I understand your thoughts perfectly, I would also imagine many others have similar thoughts.

    It is impossible to equate one profession with another. Football generates the money, if the players did not receive it then it would be in anothers pocket. The one thing that is certain, it would not go to a cause, that we all would benefit from and why should it? It's a business far beyond what was once called a sport.

    You write of the need for it to change via a collective approach, I'm afraid we are miles too late for that. The horse bolted 20 years ago.

  • Comment number 85.

    the court of law requires cases to be proved beyond reasonable doubt. In Harry's case it has been shown that not enough evidence was provided to prove he was guilty beyond reasonable doubt and He is therefore correctly found not guilty.

    John Terry is also being taking to court, again it must be proved beyond reasonable doubt for him to be found guilt of his crime. Is he really likely to be found guilt beyond reasonable doubt?

    Harry can still be manager of england & John Terry will soon be back captatin of that team. The FA, well they don't have to do anything as the courts will assist them, no charge can be brought against Terry if found not guilt.

    Poor Suarez where there was no evidence for the court of law to bother to pursue a case, the FA hold their own trial and find him guilt by one mans word against another. The FA get to show a hard stance, after all he's not english so it won't effect their own team, whilst no harm is done except to Suarez who will be branded a racist by every fan. The FA claim FIFA contained corruption maybe they need to look at themselves?

  • Comment number 86.

    #82, Bokboy12,

    were you attempting to make a difference in the world?

  • Comment number 87.

    Bokboy 12
    @82
    Are English football fans so small minded that they think it will make you a power in football again? Yes you are, if people can boo Patrice Evra for reporting Luis Suarez for Racialy abusing him, then there is not hope for much else around football. I personally hope England get trounced out of the Euros. Just like the World Cup in South Africa.
    Just so that once again the footballing clowns that are involved from the Directors of the FA to the yobs in the stands can see what a farce your beloved game has become. I will hazard my life's earnings that I will never see an England team win a major trophy. That's down to the fact that this country has no concept of the meaning team. And until you do none of this drivel that Bond or you speaks makes any difference.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Were you dropped as a baby? Maybe an Englishman done the dirty on you and you blame us all for it. Maybe your never invited to parties or you don't get out at all.

    There are many people on here that like a moan and most with a perfectly valid reason. Only a person filled with hate writes as you do.

    We may all realise that winning a trophy is going to be extremely hard to achieve but it is not impossible.

    If we ever did achieve a trophy at a tournament, then the average joe in the street would be on cloud nine, I was around the last time it happened and know full well the effect it creates for a nation.

    I am not expecting a trophy any time soon, what i want to see is England play well, entertain and enjoy their football, then maybe we can move on.

  • Comment number 88.

  • Comment number 89.

    #87, Londoner in exile returns,

    "There are many people on here that like a moan and most with a perfectly valid reason. Only a person filled with hate writes as you do."

    Now you mentioned it, I want a Suarez Bank Holiday. THIS YEAR!

  • Comment number 90.

    The Capello shambles so obviously goes straight back to the frighteningly embarrassing way the FA stitched up Suarez like a kipper it hurts.

    Looks like they're going to get what they deserve - Keegan MK II.

    Short memories as usual.

  • Comment number 91.

    Reds 18
    @89

    Brilliant, you propose it and i'll second it and we'll have it.

  • Comment number 92.

    Oh well, here comes another tournament where the football comes second. Harry found not guilty, end of story, Fabio resigns, good riddance. Now just waiting for the FA to resign on mass :)

  • Comment number 93.

    #91, Londoner in exile returns,

    You're unfair! You make me feel better on an occasion when I want to MOAN!

  • Comment number 94.

    How about a black English manager?

    Then everybody's happy!

  • Comment number 95.

    #92, DontTrustTheGovernment,

    Since you have the nickname too, have you ever seen any prime minister resigning from government and politcs altogether because they failed in their promises prior the election? (feeling optimistic I even put it in plural).

  • Comment number 96.

    #92 DontTrustTheGovernment:

    How do you know everyone in the FA is Catholic?

  • Comment number 97.

    Choirboys under the desks?

  • Comment number 98.

    @84

    Probably more idealism than realism on my part. We really have followed the US here. Where I would hope to see a chink of light would be with the financial fair play rules proposed by UEFA.

    Whether that would produce a levelling off of wages and a reduction in ticket prices remains to be seen. I'd settle for that as a cause, but again I won't hold my breath.

    For me it will always be a sport, but rather ironically, a sport that has to be run as a business. The Chelsea/Manchester City model simply can't work long term.

    I do believe there is a need to provide something similar to the "bleachers" ticket schemes run by some American sports teams. They've recognised there is a serious problem and that core supporters are being priced out.

    It was Harry Redknapp that struck a chord with me a few weeks ago. He clearly recognised the problem, together with the detachment of the modern player. I have no doubt that was genuine, and symbolic of a man who really is a throwback to a past era. That is a major part of his appeal for some.

    The horse did bolt a long time ago. I just want it to slow down and catch its breath. Perhaps then many genuine supporters could buy a ticket to ride.

  • Comment number 99.

    By the way, I'm particularly looking forward to this summer's hands-across-the-ocean reporting of the Euros from our wonderful British media, not to mention the wonderful ambassadorial role our fabulous travelling English fans are renowned for.

    What's this summer's attire - white hood with a red cross?

    What an absolute joke the typical England fan is.

  • Comment number 100.

    Nobody likes the truth, I guess.

    Probably why so many are so ready to believe a pack of lies.

 

Page 1 of 2

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.