Last week, news emerged that Liverpool were being investigated over claims of tapping up Stoke City youth prospect, offering to pay the then 12-year-old’s schooling fees in order to convince his parents to allow him to join Liverpool’s academy, something that is against FA regulations.
When Liverpool became aware of this, they then reneged on the deal to avoid breaking the rule, but to even have offered in the first place was already a punishable offence, one that led the player’s parents to sign off on the youngster’s move and has since left the player in limbo.
The player, having terminated his contract with Stoke, now cannot join another club until Stoke are paid £50k in compensation, but as his parents cannot afford to pay for the move to Liverpool and his schooling that move has been left incomplete, meaning there is no club to pay Stoke.
As a result, according to The Telegraph, Liverpool now face at the very least a fine and potentially a transfer ban on their academy that would prevent the club signing and registering youth players. Such a ban, where it enacted, would not impact the club’s ability to sign senior first team players.
It is also possible that the ban would be suspended or probationary, with Liverpool allowed to continue operating as normal but with the threat of punishment in place should they break any other rules concerning youth and academy players. And Liverpool aren’t the only side currently under investigation.
The FA are currently looking at several clubs who are accused of having run afoul of similar youth regulations, including Manchester City for allegedly tapping up a Liverpool academy player.