Legal - Soccer Wiretap

Kieran Trippier Serves Suspension, Set To Return Against Real Madrid

Mar 1, 2021 6:07 PM

Keiran Trippier has served his 10-week suspension and is set to return this weekend against Real Madrid.

Trippier was banned due to a betting offense.

Atletico Madrid have mainly used Sime Vrsaljko as Trippier's replacement.

Atleti currently top the table by five points, with a game in hand. 

David G. Medina/Marca

Tags: Atlético Madrid, Real Madrid, Legal, Suspension

Josep Maria Bartomeu Reportedly Arrested During Raid

Mar 1, 2021 1:37 PM

Former Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu was reportedly arrested following a raid at the club's offices on Monday.

His adviser Jaume Masferrer, the club's CEO Oscar Grau and head of legal services Roman Gomez Ponti were also among those arrested.

"Given the entry of the local police at the club's offices, per a court order relating to the hiring [of a third-party company] and monitoring services of social networks, FC Barcelona has offered its full support to judicial and police authorities and collaborated with them to clarify the facts that are the subject of the investigation," released the club in a statement.

Police were searching for evidence that Bartomeu used a third-party service to smear players and potential presidential candidates.

Barcelona were cleared for any wrongdoing in an external audit by PricewaterhouseCoopers, with Spanish police opening up their own investigation. 

Moises Llorens & Sam Marsden/ESPN FC

Tags: Barcelona, Legal

Lionel Messi Could Earn More Than $670 Million Over Four Year Contract

Jan 30, 2021 10:54 PM

Lionel Messi is set to earn over $670 million over his four year deal if all conditions are met, according to Spanish newspaper El Mundo.

The contract was agreed in 2017, and is set to expire at the end of this season.

Messi currently earns just under $168 million per season. 

The 33-year-old also received a $139 million signing bonus, plus a $93 million "loyalty" bonus.

Messi has already earned $620 million of his contract, according to the report. 

Alex Kirkland/ESPN

Tags: Barcelona, Legal

MLS Invokes Force Majeure Clause In CBA

Dec 29, 2020 9:03 PM

The MLS will invoke a force majeure clause in its collective bargaining agreement with the union that obligates both sides to negotiate modifications to the deal.

"Unfortunately, based on the assessment of public health officials, it is clear that the impact of COVID-19 and the restrictions on attendance at sporting events will continue into the 2021 MLS season," deputy commissioner Mark Abbott told ESPN. "We recognize the impact that the pandemic has had on our players and appreciate their efforts to restart and complete the 2020 season, but, like the other leagues in the United States and Canada, MLS needs to address the ongoing challenges caused by the pandemic and will engage in good-faith discussions with our players about ways to manage the significant economic issues we are facing."

MLS commissioner Don Garber said that the league lost nearly $1 billion in revenue in 2020, and the source stressed to ESPN that the league couldn't afford a second successive season suffering such losses.

The MLS is heavily dependent on match day revenue and fans are not expected to attend sporting events in large numbers until the second half of 2021.

Austin Lindberg/ESPN

Tags: Legal

Dell Loy Hansen To Sell Real Salt Lake, Utah Royals FC

Aug 30, 2020 10:08 PM

Major League Soccer announced that Dell Loy Hansen will sell Real Salt Lake, Utah Royals FC, and the Real Monarchs.

The decision stems from comments Hansen made after MLS players boycotted games on Wednesday.

Hansen described the protests "like somebody stabbed you and you're trying to figure out a way to pull the knife out and move forward. That's what it feels like. The disrespect is profound to me personally."

Hansen would walk back his comments in an official statement.

"I recognize that at times I have spoken too quickly, without pausing to consider the feelings or good intentions of others. This is not acceptable and I assume full responsibility for allowing my words to travel unfiltered as to their significance and impact," said Hansen.

MLS commissioner Don Garber added that Hansen came to the decision to sell all three teams on his own.

Jeff Carlisle/ESPNFC

Tags: Real Salt Lake, Legal

La Liga: Lionel Messi Will Have To Pay $833 Million Release Clause

Aug 30, 2020 12:21 PM

La Liga released an official statement declaring that Lionel Messi will have to pay his $833 million release clause in order to leave Barcelona.

Messi reportedly remains confident that he will be able to leave the club for free this summer, and that the clause is invalid for the final year of his contract.

La Liga's statement gives an added boost to Barcelona's claims.

Messi is set to skip the start of Barcelona's preseason training on Monday.

M. Carmen Torres/Marca

Tags: Barcelona, Legal

Dynamo Dresden Players Quarantined For 14 Days

May 9, 2020 6:58 PM

Dynamo Dresden players will be quarantined for 14 days after two players tested positive for COVID-19, putting the restart of the Bundesliga 2 at risk.

The Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 are scheduled to start next weekend.

Dresden are at the bottom of the table, with 9 matches left to play.

Bundesliga CEO Christian Seifert said that matches will continue to be played as scheduled.

"It's not a setback. It was always clear it could happen," said Seifert.

Stephan Uersfeld/ESPN

Tags: Legal, Suspension

Premier League Relegation Unlikely If Season Canceled

Apr 19, 2020 3:12 PM

Teams will not get relegated from the Premier League is the season is unable to resume, according to Brighton owner Tony Bloom.

Premier League sides met on Friday to discuss a plan to restart the season, though all possibilities are hypothetical due to the unpredictability of the pandemic.

"You may get a title winner, obviously Liverpool deserve it, you may use that criteria for European qualification, but I do not see how anyone can vote for that, certainly the percent needed for teams to get relegated," said Bloom.

Bloom also discussed a plan in which teams would be ranked by their points-per-match.

"I don't foresee a situation, if the season's not played out, that teams will get relegated on a points-per-game basis.

"I just don't think it's fathomable that a team which is not allowed to play out the season may lose out on 0.2 points based on this system, and also it does not take into account the strength of the team you have not played."


Tags: Brighton & Hove Albion, Arsenal, Aston Villa, Bournemouth, Burnley, Chelsea, Crystal Palace, Everton, Leicester City, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Newcastle United, Norwich City, Sheffield United, Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur, Watford, West Ham United, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Legal, Misc Rumor

Liga MX To Suspend Promotion-Relegation For 5 Years

Apr 18, 2020 2:49 PM

Liga MX will suspend promotion and relegation to and from the top division for 5 years.

The second division will become a developmental league for young Mexican players, with a limit on the number of players over the age of 23.

The second division has been reduced from 18 teams down to 12 teams in recent years.

The move to end promotion and relegation also fueled further rumors of Liga MX and MLS working together to form one league. 

Tom Marshall/ESPN

Tags: Legal, Misc Rumor

Premier League Targeting Resumption Of Matches On June 6th

Apr 13, 2020 12:36 PM

English soccer are working towards June 6th as a date for their return to competitive action. Matches will be played without fans in attendance.

A video conference of all 20 Premier League clubs is due to take place this Friday in order to discuss and outline a tentative schedule for the resumption of the league in the coming weeks.

Clubs will have a three-week mini preseason starting on May 16th.

The plan depends entirely on government advice and the extent of lockdown measures in the United Kingdom.

Mark Ogden/ESPN

Tags: Brighton & Hove Albion, Arsenal, Aston Villa, Bournemouth, Burnley, Chelsea, Crystal Palace, Everton, Leicester City, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Newcastle United, Norwich City, Sheffield United, Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur, Watford, West Ham United, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Legal

FIFA Looking To Financially Assist Clubs Affected By COVID-19 Pandemic


Tottenham Announce Wage Cuts For Non-Playing Staff


Bundesliga Likely To Complete 2020 Season Without Fans

Stephan Uersfeld Germany correspondent

Lionel Messi Hits Out At Board After Barcelona Players Take Wage Cut

Moises Llorens & Sam Marsden/ESPN

Atletico Madrid, Espanyol To Cut Player Wages

Sid Lowe/The Guardian

Several Premier League Clubs Want To End Season Immediately

David Ornstein/The Athletic

Liverpool To Complete 2019-20 Season Wearing New Balance Jerseys

James Pearce/The Athletic

Barcelona Players Agree To Wage Cut During League Suspension

Moises Llorens & Sam Marsden/ESPN

Spanish FA Offers $540 Million Bailout For La Liga Clubs

Adriana Garcia/ESPN

Barcelona Could Cut Pay Up To 70% For First-Team Players

Sid Lowe & Ben Fisher/The Guardian

Serie A Matches To Be Played Behind Closed Doors Until April

Football Italia

Monterrey Launch Complaint Against Rodolfo Pizarro, Inter Miami

Tom Marshall/ESPN

Aurelio De Laurentiis Fines Napoli Squad $2.75 Million

Andrew Cesare Richardson/ESPN

ENIC Group Interested In Selling Tottenham Hotspur

Julien Laurens/ESPN

Barcelona Agree To Pay Atletico Madrid $16.7 Million


Proposed Site Of Miami Stadium Contains Toxic Arsenic Contamination
The proposed stadium site sits on 131 acres of public golf course land.

Joey Flechas/Miami Herald

MLS Players Preparing For Possible Strike In 2020
The current CBA will expire on January 31st, 2020.

Jeff Carlisle/ESPNFC

Atalanta To Play Champions League Matches Next Season At San Siro
The move has drawn a mixed reaction from Milan supporters.

Football Italia

Atletico Madrid To Pursue Charges Against Barcelona Over Griezmann
Atleti's disagreement involves details surrounding Antoine Griezmann's buyout clause.

Chris Winterburn/Marca

Milan To Serve One-Year Ban From European Competition
Torino will replace Milan in the Europa League next season.

The Guardian