Wigan Broke Rule U18
Dave Whelan has been calling West Ham cheats and calling for the club to have points deducted. Now, thanks to petsta on the West Ham Mad forum we can reveal that Wigan broke Rule U18 themselves this season.
In a nutshell West Ham were found guilty of signing players on contracts that gave third parties the right to terminate said contracts in the January transfer window. Because of this West Ham were found guilty of breaking Rule U18, which makes it illegal for clubs to allow third parties to materially influence its policies or the performance of its teams.
Now compare this to the case of Wigan player Andy Webster (although when we say Wigan we really mean Rangers). Now Andy Webster used to play for Hearts but Rangers liked him so much that they kept trying to sign him. Hearts owner Vladimir Romanov however kept saying no and refused to sell the player to Rangers.
Andy Webster got annoyed with this so he therefore became the first player to invoke a loophole in Article 17 of a FIFA-adopted EU law, enabling him to cancel his contract with Hearts in the third year of a four-year deal, with the proviso that he join a club in a foreign country and that sufficient notice be given to his former employers.
Andy Webster then supposedly became a Wigan player on September 4, 2006. Then come the January transfer window Andy Webster is suddenly loaned by Wigan to Rangers.
Now do you remember the proviso that Webster had to move to 'a foreign country'. It seems abundantly clear that Rangers have used Wigan to enable Webster to break his contract with Hearts. Either that or we are supposed to believe that Andy Webster is good enough to play for Rangers but not good enough to play for a struggling Wigan side.
It is obvious that Wigan have signed a player with a clause in his contract that another club (a third party) can then loan him in January. This is almost eerily similar to what West Ham were themselves found guilty of and it is clear that Wigan have allowed third parties to materially influence its policies and the performance of its team and that Wigan are guilty of breaking Rule U18.
Therefore at the very least Wigan deserve to be fined £5.5 million. However because of Whelan's protestations against West Ham at a time when he was guilty of exactly the same offence I would suggest the punishment should be far more severe.
What would seem most just is a one point deduction. After all that is over two points less than Whelan has been claiming West Ham should be deducted.