• Straight Shootin' LJA

Corruption in football, Allardyce & a broken English reputation

Corruption in British football involving the English #fa & the England manager, we've discussed corruption for years on Pitch Talk Live #ptlive shows (links available upon request), so for us (especially yours truly) the Telegraph’s revelations of a sting operation involving England manager Sam Allardyce are not a surprise at all.

We've said on #ptlive shows for years and discussed in detail about how corrupt FIFA, UEFA and our own English FA are (check out http://youtube.com/pitchtalk for numerous corruption in football special feature segments) and we’ve always said that sh*t would hit the fan at some point (I was waiting for the day personally). Hopefully this latest scandal is the beginning of the dissolution of the good old boy networks i’ve always been critical of at FA level…

FIFA were the first to get exposed but we knew it wouldn't be the last. Circumventing rules isn't new, when FFP was first suggested we said straight away that the bigger clubs would find loopholes to get around them, so Allardyce speaking on the Telegraph newspaper sting about circumventing third party ownership rules isn’t a new thing, it’s more of a who thing, as in, who are they talking about in terms of players. Remember, as we discussed on a #ptlive show in May 2015, agents have been deregulated by FIFA, so Allardyce's comments about getting agents on board plays into what we discussed about deregulation potentially leading to a 'wild west' of agents with any Tom, Dick & Harry getting into that sector and young players development not only being hampered, but neglected totally, but even that is only part of the problem.

Panorama bung scandal documentaries done on behalf of the BBC & Channel 4 Dispatches documentaries on buying football clubs (just to name 2 examples), these stings have been done before on multiple occasions. Harry Redknapp, Sven Goran Ericsson, Bryan Robson have all been stung at some point before and those are just in relation to British clubs/people, don't get me started on FIFA & UEFA or we'll be here all night.

Some say this Telegraph sting with Sam Allardyce hurts the integrity of our FA/English football’s reputation, i’d disagree on that because to me this is another in a long list of things that have damaged the integrity of English football. Our FA, those in & those around it have compromised the integrity of english football for many years, for many reasons including the callous destruction of the grass roots game, the loopholes in the homegrown rule, half baked rules for the development of the game including the suggestion of Premier League B-teams in English Football league, the very public brownnosing of Adnan Januzaj that was utterly embarrassing & sent complete mixed messages to young domestic talent, the lack of BAME representation at the top levels of the game, the list is endless.

As I said on one of our recent #PTLIVE special feature segments on our show, When you have corruption at the very top, don't be surprised if it's evident elsewhere and at every level of the game... From Claus Lundekvam talking about spot fixing during his days at Southampton in the 90s, to match fixing in Champions league matches from 2009 (see Debrecen’s GK v Liverpool fc), to El Salvador being approached to fix a game v Canada a few short weeks ago.

This is disappointing but nowhere near surprising because as we've said for years, to get rid of corruption in football, you'd have to literally stop the game, or to borrow the title of a tune from Nas’ 2001 album; Stillmatic... Destroy and Rebuild.

More stuff will hit the fan and more people will be thrown under the bus, but unless swift and decisive changes happen, it’ll keep happening. On Pitch Talk LIVE back in 2011 (and on other occasions) we called for Interpol to investigate FIFA and that eventually happened in 2015, hopefully that will happen in regards to this level of corruption in British football.

I wouldn’t hold my breath on that happening though, because just like i’ve said about FIFA & UEFA, too many people are making kickbacks on this corruption to want to ruffle feathers and they’ll do everything to stop proper investigations & nothing will change as it’ll blow over and the #parisiticmedia will move onto the next story and leave this in the rear view, which is why i’d like to see an independent entity clean this utter mess up, because how can you take the FA seriously, when they won’t take the scourge of corruption seriously…

One of the other sad things about this for me is the fact that us fans are the ones getting constantly shafted, whether directly or indirectly, immediately or eventually, whilst those at the top generally get off scot free in these situations with a slap on the wrist and a giant payoff and us fans are again left questioning our love for a game riddled by corruption and greed.

Unless people are brought to justice and held accountable for their actions, they’ll keep on happening and if all our FA do is come out and make a ‘statement’ about this and don’t take swift, draconian action, then i’ll have to quote HBK Shawn Michaels again and say ‘If I wanted crap out of you, i’d pick it out of your teeth’ to FA Chairman Greg Clarke and co.

Some serious sh*t is about to hit the fan and on a personal note, don't say we didn't warn you :-) I'm Straight Shootin' LJA...and that's my opinion!!!

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