The Telegraph just published a massive exclusive showing Sam Allardyce meeting with foreign businessmen, using his position as England manager to negotiate a lucrative consulting gig and indirectly advise them on circumventing FA regulations.
During the meeting, which was recorded by undercover reporters posing as investors, Allardyce discussed Football Association rules and regulations concerning player transfers and how one might get around them in order to make more money.
Allardyce mocking Roy Hodgson’s voice and criticize Neville
The meeting took place after Allardyce was appointed the new England manager in the wake of Roy Hodgson’s resignation, but before he held his first training session with the squad earlier this month. Allardyce flew to Hong Kong and Singapore to meet with men he believed represented an East Asian firm looking to break into the football business, enticed by the massive influx of revenue brought on by the Premier League’s new broadcast contract. He then met them again some time later at a restaurant in Manchester.
In reality, the men were investigative journalists conducting a lengthy probe into corruption in British football. While they hadn’t counted on the meeting yielding anything major, they decided to record it anyway, just in case.
In the murky deal, he offered to fly to China and Singapore to ‘talk football’. He also mocked former manager Roy Hodgson’s speech — calling him ‘Woy’ — criticised former England No 2 Gary Neville and indiscreetly gave his views on why the team froze against Iceland in their disastrous Euro 2016 defeat.
During the undercover ‘sting’, Allardyce is filmed:
- Mocking former England manager Hodgson’s speech, calling him ‘Woy’.
- Saying Euro 2016 flop Hodgson would ‘send people to sleep,’ as an after dinner speaker. ‘He hasn’t got the personality for it,’ adding that he ‘just collapsed’ as England manager and that the players had ‘let him down’.
- Blaming Hodgson’s assistant Gary Neville for the failure to send on Marcus Rashford earlier as England crashed out to Iceland and accusing him of being ‘the wrong mix’. Allardyce adds: ‘****ing tell Gary to sit down and shut up, so you can do what you want.’
- Offering advice on how to get around FA rules on transfers relating to the complicated third party ownership of foreign players.
The meeting also involved Allardyce’s financial adviser Shane Moloney and agent Mark Curtis. The England manager also claimed the FA had ‘stupidly’ rebuilt Wembley for £870million. The controversy has put the FA in an invidious position given that England’s next game is a World Cup qualifier against Malta at Wembley on Saturday week with the squad set to be named this Sunday. They visit Slovenia three days later and entertain Scotland on November 11 in further qualifiers, with a home friendly against Spain four days later.