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Liverpool Settle Tapping-Up Case with Premier League

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The case of the Stoke academy player left in limbo is resolved according to statement from Liverpool and the league.

Liverpool v Stoke City - Premier League Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Despite it taking rather a long time to get there, in the end it appears a just ending to the case of Liverpool making an improper approach for a Stoke City academy prospect—variously described as a case tapping up or of having offered forbidden inducements to the player’s family—has been found.

Liverpool have settled the case by paying Stoke the compensation that would have been owed had they completed the signing of the player, who formally departed the Stoke system believing he had a place at Liverpool and would have his schooling paid for by his new club only for the deal to fall through.

Issues arose concerning both the manner of Liverpool’s approach and with their offers of financial and other support in order to allow the prospect and his family make the switch north to Merseyside. Facing the threat of serious punishment, Liverpool quickly backed out of completing the deal.

It left the player in limbo, his schooling now not paid for and unable to join another academy unless one was willing to pay Stoke’s compensation. He is, at the very least, now no longer in limbo, according to a joint statement from the league and Liverpool following the reaching of an agreement today.

“The Premier League and Liverpool FC have reached a constructive agreement regarding the future education of a young player who was unable to register with the club,” reads the statement. “Under the terms of the agreement, the player will be able to continue his education at his current school.

“He will also be free to join another club in the academy system without that club being required to pay compensation, which has been settled with his former club, Stoke City FC. We are pleased [the matter] has been resolved and wish him a successful future.”