City settle with Leeds over transfer of youngsters
According to today’s Yorkshire Evening Post, City have agreed compensation with Leeds United over the transfer of 14-year-olds, George Swan and Louis Hutton.
Their move hit the headlines a few weeks ago, when outrage stories on the movement of young players proliferated in the aftermath of Chelsea’s ban for the illicit signing of Gael Kakuta. Ken Bates had chipped in demanding points deductions for clubs taking young players, but not for the first time this has proved to be bluster from the ex-Chelsea chairman.
Was he just trying to bump up the price City would pay? We’ll never know. At the time, City had made an offer which Leeds deemed unacceptable, and the case was to go before the Professional Football Compensation Committee (PFCC) to have the fee set. This was perfectly legitimate within the current rules.
Swan’s father (a former Leeds player) spoke of how the decision for his son to come to City had been motivated by the better facilities on offer. While Leeds have an excellent record of bringing through youngsters, their financial woes seem to have impacted on the facilities available at Thorp Arch.
City and Leeds have now come to an “amicable private agreement” without going to the tribunal, according to the Elland Road club, though they haven’t confirmed the actual fee.
This is good news for City as they could do without any further controversy following the Jeremy Helan case with Rennes. It’s also good news for the two youngsters who can now concentrate on their football. Let’s hope they make it.