Bolton Handed April Court Date

  • October 06, 2013 | By Chris Mann
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Phil Gartside and three other representatives of Bolton Wanderers will appear in court next year to resolve an argument with Tony McGill, the former agent of Gavin McCann.

McCann joined Wanderers in a £1million move from Aston Villa in June 2007 and McGill claims he was cut out of the deal, costing him a commission payment of up to £390,000. Instead of using the individual licensed agent, the transfer and subsequent contractual negotiations were conducted under the watch of Sports Entertainment Management (SEM) - which McGill claims was an 'unlawful' move.

Gartside, the chairman of Bolton, club secretary Simon Marland, ex-manager Sammy Lee and director of football Frank McParland will attend the High Court case in Manchester on April 4, 2014, in an attempt to bring an end to the saga which was first brought to public attention more than six years ago.

At that time, speaking to The Daily Mail, McGill said: "I'm absolutely disgusted with Bolton, who have told Gavin to go with a particular agency. I've all the evidence, which I've passed on to The FA, to show I organised the transfer over a period of time at a price acceptable to both clubs. Yet Phil Gartside told me I was trying to jump in on the deal. It's outrageous."

In response to the agent, Gartside said: "The McCann move was one of the easiest deals we've done. It was worked out between myself and Villa chief executive Richard FitzGerald. McGill had no mandate from McCann or the clubs."

Along with the four aforementioned members of the Bolton staff, McGill is pursuing damages from SEM members Jerome Anderson, Jeffrey Weston and David Sheron who, like Wanderers, deny allegations of any wrongdoing. All seven people, and their two parent companies, accused of pushing McGill out of the McCann transfer are expected to be present at court in April.

McGill, who previously worked under the SEM brand, was involved in negotiations which took McCann from Everton to Sunderland in 1998 and then on to Aston Villa in 2003. He claims to have started talks over a transfer to Bolton in March 2007, after already severing ties with the SEM group. However, the Trotters claim discussions over a potential move didn't begin until May - two months later than McGill's allegation.

SEM say McGill had no legal obligation to McCann at the time of the transfer, as he had already left the agency when talks began, and the player was under contract to the company - not any individual who represented their brand. SEM and Bolton Wanderers maintain the deal was completed legally, and was within the rules of The FA's transfer and agent policy.

When approached for comment by The Bolton News, the club declined to comment and SEM had nobody available to respond to their query.

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