Pompey's fury at FA fine over Benjani
PORTSMOUTH have criticised the Football Association, saying they are "astounded" at being fined for breaching rules over the transfer of Benjani Mwaruwari to and from the club.
The club were fined 15,000 and Scottish players' agent Willie McKay given a suspended ban by an independent regulatory commission, after they were found guilty of breaching FA rules.
The breach was a technical one in that agents are not allowed to act for two different clubs in two consecutive transactions involving the same player.
It was found that McKay acted on behalf of Auxerre when Benjani moved to Portsmouth in January 2006. He then acted for Portsmouth when the Zimbabwe striker moved to Manchester City in January this year.
A Portsmouth spokesman said: "Portsmouth FC is astounded that the FA have fined the club in respect of Benjani Mwaruwari's transfers to and from the club.
"We had no idea that the agent Willie McKay received a fee when the player joined us from Auxerre in January 2006, and both the agent and club confirmed this to the FA – evidence they have clearly ignored."
McKay was given a suspended ban – if there are any further breaches of the FA's agents regulations in the next two years he will not be allowed to take part in any transactions involving English clubs for the duration of one transfer window.
Portsmouth will face a further 15,000 fine if they breach any rules during the next two years. Commission chairman Paul Gilroy QC stated after the hearing: "The Football Agents Regulations were introduced as an important method of addressing unacceptable practices in professional football, particularly in the transfer market.
"The commission considered that the justice of the case was met by imposing penalties, which to a large degree will act as an incentive to both parties to avoid any future transgressions."
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