No punishment for Wolves over link with super agent Mendes

Date published: Wednesday 25th April 2018 6:47

The English Football League is satisfied that Wolves’ relationship with Jorge Mendes has not breached its regulations regarding intermediaries.

Last month a number of Championship clubs urged the Football League to investigate the influence at Molineux of the high-profile Portuguese agent, whose clients include Jose Mourinho and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Mendes, who has no official title at the club, has a number of clients at Wolves including head coach Nuno Espirito Santo, £15million midfielder Ruben Neves, attacker Diogo Jota, who is on loan from Atletico Madrid, and £7million winger Ivan Cavaleiro.

Such players have been pivotal in Wolves winning the title this season and clinching promotion back to the Premier League, but the English Football League’s investigation has concluded that the club has no case to answer.

A statement issued by the EFL said: “Discussions between the EFL and management of Wolverhampton Wanderers have now concluded in regard to the matter of the relationship between the club, majority shareholder Fosun and intermediary Jorge Mendes.

“Following the commitment made in March, as a result of some concerns raised by a number of Championship clubs, the EFL has met with Wolverhampton Wanderers to ensure compliance with the requirements of its regulations.

“At that meeting, a request for information was made by the EFL and following a comprehensive review of the detail subsequently provided by the club, it has been determined that Mr Mendes holds no role at the club and, as such should not be categorised as a ‘relevant person’ as defined by league regulations.

“On this basis there is no requirement for him to submit to the owners’ and directors’ test.”

Leeds, through owner Andrea Radrizzani, were the club most vocal about Wolves’ links with Mendes.

Wolves staunchly maintained their innocence throughout and welcomed the EFL’s stance following its enquiries.

“After meeting with EFL representatives and providing further written detail, a comprehensive review has concluded with confirmation that the EFL is satisfied there has been no breach of its regulations,” said the club in a statement.

“We have always maintained our clarity on both FA and EFL regulations, which have been complied with explicitly since the change of ownership at the club in July 2016.

“We believe the release of these findings will bring to a conclusion any speculation surrounding the club’s operation and extinguish any concerns held by other clubs.”

Mendes advised Fosun on the takeover of Wolves in 2016, shortly after the Chinese conglomerate bought a stake in his agency.

Under Football Association rules, club owners are prohibited from holding an interest in agencies and agents are not allowed to have an influence on the running of a football club.

An FA spokesperson said: “The FA has strict regulations in place for all football activities involving intermediaries.

“We obtained confirmation from Wolves and all relevant parties, including Mr Mendes, regarding the sale of the club in 2016 and their ongoing compliance with the FA’s regulations on working with intermediaries.

“The Premier League and the EFL primarily regulate matters of club ownership and will continue to do so through their owners’ and directors’ test.”

 

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