Key points and recommendations from the Stevens inquiry
Findings from the Stevens inquiry:
- 17 of the original 362 transfers have yet to be cleared.
- Eight agents refused to co-operate fully with the Stevens inquiry.
- Many recommendations made by the previous bungs inquiry in 1997 have not been adopted.
- Three clubs breached transfer rules because they did not know the correct regulations. Their cases will be passed to the Premier League and Football Association for possible disciplinary action.
- Players are often unaware how much their agents are receiving - in 15 transfers the agents' fee was more than the player's annual salary.
- 16 Premier League clubs failed to document financial arrangements connected to their transfers appropriately.
On three occasions payments were made to agents with no supporting invoices; two clubs failed to enter into written agreements with the agents; six clubs failed to identify an agent who had acted in a transfer.
- 20 agents act together or in informal partnerships without always disclosing this to the club or player.
- Significant conflicts of interest identified including payments by an agent to a firm managed by a relative of a club official. One agent acted for two clubs and a player in a single transfer.
- The FA 'failed to monitor in any detailed or systematic way the arrangements connected to transfers occurring during the inquiry period.'
- The FA's clearing-house system failed to review the information on unusual payments or transfers as thoroughly as it should have done.
- The Professional Football Association should not - as it currently does in many cases - act as agents to players in respect of transfers. Instead, the PFA's role should be to educate and advise players dealing with clubs and agents.
- Players not clubs should pay agents who represent them, and submit annual statements detailing how much they have paid their agents.
- An agent who is a close relative of a club official should not be the manager's agent or receive any payment from any transaction associated with that club.
- A manager's agent should not act for any players at that club or act on a transfer involving that club.
- Every club should submit an annual return to the FA identifying all the amounts paid by that club to agents.
- Agents should submit to the FA and Premier League all payments or agreements on a quarterly basis.
- The FA need to implement the Burns proposals and reorganise their concerning their compliance unit into a semi-autonomous body, review annually by an independent body.
- The FA need to come up with definite punishments for breaching transfer rules.
- The FA and FIFA should be asked to put pressure on the eight uncooperative agents to help fully with the inquiry.