West Ham Medical Team Phone in Sick
Yesterday's Evening Spamhead claims that West Ham "are set to make major changes in the rehabilitation and treatment of injured players", after Anton Ferdinand became the latest to join the club's lengthening list of non-walking wounded.
The paper says the board has been concerned not just with the number of players injured but with the length of time it has taken some players to recover. The Times say that West Ham have ordered a team from London's Roehampton University to investigate the club's medical facilities and rehabilitation programmes.
The Times also reveal that West Ham have e-mailed other Premier League clubs about Rule U18. In preparation for its defence against Sheffield United's claim for compensation Peter Barnes, the West Ham secretary, sent an e-mail to his counterparts on April 10 asking them if they were aware that Rule U18 prohibited third party ownership.
“Our legal team have asked me to see whether you would be prepared to assist with a written witness statement which they can help you to prepare to aid our case,” Barnes wrote. “The question is: 'When you were involved in transfers in Season 2006-7 did any of you other than referring to the Sections K, L and M ever consult or have need to refer to Rule U18 or indeed ever really know of its existence?' I confirm if you agree to assist it would only involve a written statement and not an appearance at court.”
It seems a poor defence to me. I thought even school children were aware of the cliche that 'ignorance is no defence of the law'