The Football Association has asked for “the full facts” after a newspaper alleged England manager Sam Allardyce discussed the possibility of circumventing its rules on third-party ownership.
A report in The Daily Telegraph claims Allardyce told undercover reporters posing as businessmen it was possible to “get around” an FA rule, introduced in 2008, banning third parties from owning part of a player’s economic rights.
And the report also alleges Allardyce mocked predecessor Roy Hodgson, called Prince Harry “a very naughty boy” and said the FA was “all about making money”.
Asked for a response to the report, published on the Telegraph website on Monday night, an FA spokesman said: “We have asked The Daily Telegraph to provide us with the full facts in relation to this matter.”
Among the allegations are that Allardyce agreed to travel to the Far East as a paid ambassador for the fictitious businessmen, while a video posted on the Telegraph website appears to show Hodgson being mocked for his speech impediment and personality.
The paper quotes Allardyce saying of Hodgson’s public-speaking ability: “He’d send them all to sleep, Roy. Woy. He hasn’t got the personality for it.”
And the new England boss is also shown in the video suggesting Hodgson “was too indecisive” in the way he managed England and dealt with assistant Gary Neville’s “wrong influence” at Euro 2016, where they were beaten by Iceland in the second round.
“Tell Gary to sit down and shut up so you can do what you want,” he says.
Allardyce also criticised his FA employers for “stupidly” spending “£870m on Wembley”, according to the report, which quotes him saying: “They’re all about making money aren’t they?
“You know the FA’s the richest football association in the world? Well, I shouldn’t say that. They’re not the richest at all. What they do is they have the biggest turnover in the world with £325 million.”
Allardyce failed to respond to requests for a comment.