Mon 18 Feb by Mark Gleeson


* Several England players have yet to receive fees worth tens of thousands of pounds for representing their country last year due to continuing negotiations over proposed changes to their commercial arrangements. The Football Association is seeking to bring all sponsorship activities in-house with the players having a contract with 1966 Entertainment that runs until 2030. It wants recently capped players such as Jadon Sancho to sign up to a new deal. A number of players are understood to be refusing as details regarding the deal have yet to be finalised and they don’t want to isolate themselves from the rest of the squad, so payments they are entitled to have been withheld.
* Ayanda Patosi’s move to Iran is in jeopardy after his new club Esteghlal were stopped from registering him as he has not payed for the nationa team in the last two years. He is a victim of a clamp down on the quality of African players in the league and former Bafana Bafana caretaker coach Owen da Gama has written a letter to support the fact that Patosi was a subject of a call-up bid from him when he was briefly in charge of the national team in March 2017, to support Cape Town City’s assertion that Patosi has been a bona fide international prospect inside the last two years.
* Barcelona Coach Ernesto Valverde has signed a new contract to keep him at the Camp Nou until 2020 with a further one-year option, it has been confirmed. Appointed in mid- 2017, Valverde’s previous contract at the club was due to expire at the end of the current campaign, generating speculation surrounding his future. The 55-year-old – who has previously managed at Espanyol, Villarreal, Olympiakos and Athletic Bilbao – led Barca to the domestic double in his first season at the club.
* England’s Football Association and the Football League are holding talks about whether to introduce a new law to specifically prohibit spying on opponents in light of the Leeds United spying scandal. There is nothing in the FA’s 600-page handbook covering rules and governance that specifically refers to cases of espionage, while the EFL is relying on the charter signed by all 72 of its clubs each summer, in which they pledge to treat each other with respect, to underpin any action it may take against Leeds.