Often Partisan

The Contract Situation

Whilst player contracts pretty much always finish at the end of June, football clubs have to notify players by the third Sunday in May whether then intend to retain them with a new deal or not. As that date is this weekend, I thought it might be pertinent to take a look at the contract situation at Blues.

Blues have the added complication of the current embargo which restricts them to seeking league approval to issue new contracts to players.

As it stands, the players whose current deals will expire on June 30 2012 are Stephen Carr, David Murphy, Colin Doyle, Enric Valles, Luke Hubbins, Jake Jervis, Caleb Folan and Cian Hughton.

There are also five players whose loan deals will elapse – Boaz Myhill, Peter Ramage, Guirane N’Daw, Andros Townsend and Erik Huseklepp.

Of the players whose contracts are due to run out, David Murphy is the only one that I understand has an option built into his deal which is for a year in the clubs favour and I suspect in all likelihood that Blues will exercise this.

If the finances are in place I would expect Blues to make offers to Stephen Carr and Colin Doyle – however, it would be down to the players in question if they accepted it or not. In Doyle’s case you’d think that he would want to move on after playing second fiddle for so long but you never know.

I do not expect deals to be offered to Valles (who I understand is trialling for teams in Spain), Jervis or Hubbins; I don’t know what will happen with Folan or Hughton but I can’t see either staying in all honesty.

Of the five loan players there are varying degrees of how likely Blues will look to re-engage their services. Myhill is seen by many as a potential makeweight in a deal to take Foster to the Baggies and I have to say it wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest – although if Doyle does decide to stay with the emergence of Jack Butland it would be much less likely.

Peter Ramage is out of contract with QPR this summer and I could see Blues offering him a one year deal as he offers the kind of versatility that Hughton likes and his wages would potentially be relatively low. It’s my understanding that N’Daw has two years left on his deal at St Etienne and I think it’s highly unlikely Blues would try and sign him.

Whilst it’s unlikely Erik Huseklepp will return to his parent club Portsmouth to play, it’s been widely reported in Norway that SK Brann are after his services and with the recent birth of his daughter in his homeland I suspect he will end up returning there.

Andros Townsend is the interesting one; as a left winger back at Spurs he has the likes of Gareth Bale in front of him and you would have to think that he’s not going to make it there. It’s widely reported that Andros knew Chris Hughton well and admired him – and I wonder if that would persuade the young left-winger to come to Blues on a year long deal next season with a view to a permanent deal – the kind of deal which got Seb Larsson sustained first team football and in my opinion set him up for his career which has gone from strength to strength.

For reference, the current list of players from the first team squad who will enter next season in the final year of their contract is: Steven Caldwell, Pablo Ibanez, Chris Burke, Morgaro Gomis, Wade Elliott, Adam Rooney, Keith Fahey, Jonathan Spector, Akwasi Asante, Frazer Kerr and Ben Foster.

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24 Responses to “The Contract Situation”

  • Blue Steve says:

    Great summary Almajir. Marlon King signed a 3 year contract. So he should still have 2 years to run unless I am mistaken.

    • Disgruntled Blues Fan says:

      Murphy to keep. Carr to retire. Townsned to keep, all the others to go including Chris Hughton. They are all rubbish.

  • pierre says:

    any further news on that right back you mentioned.

  • Mark says:

    I tink that Doyle will go, he has become more and more frustrated in recent years and his Mrs hasn’t heped his case by taking to twitter whenever he has come home from training being frustrated.

    The option on Murphy will be taken I hope and if Carr is ok I believe they will offer him a new contract.

    The rest I believe will be leaving.

    Of the loan players, I hope you are right on Townsend and he did state earlier in the season he was happy here and wanted a perm home as he was disappionted to keep moving around.

    I think a lot of fans would like to see N’Daw stay but I am ot too sure. He had a good spell before he went away in Jan but before and after that I thought he was pretty poor and wouldn’t be worth the fee in my eyes!

    Erik we never saw enough of so we can’t judge and I would be happy to keep Ramage, he didn’t start to well but got into his stride as the games went on and started to hold his own. Would be a good squad player but if they offer Carr a contract he may not be needed!

  • Paul Carter says:

    The contract that concerns me most is Chris Hughtons

    What are the details of it and how easy is it for him to leave when another offer comes his way?

  • almajir says:

    Rolling…

  • utbb says:

    I’d love us to keep Murphy and possibly Carr – be good to have Townsend for another season as i think he will get loads better for us. Id like Doyle to move on as he needs to to further his career – and he has had some great moments between the sticks for Blues but most of the time i just crap myself when he’s in there – and his kicking is awful. Valles has just been hanging round doing nothing, has scored a few for the reserves but it seems no one feels he is good enough to break into the first team so i hope he gets a team back in his home land. We need some new blood and a bigger squad – i really hope these accounts are filed and i wish for a new investor…

  • tom hill says:

    the players and their contracts are a mute point a the min till we sort our management situation out! i just hope pannu has the clout and patter 2 talk houghton about, keep chris wel have a chance otherwise i cant see us challenging again next season!!

  • Taz says:

    Paul C.
    Chris Hughton’s contract is a “one year rolling contract”. That means that it always has one year to run. As of today, CH’s contract has 365 days left. As of tomorrow, CH’s contraxct will still have 365 days and so on.

    He was not just given a one-year contract which would just have run for 365 days and then expired, therefore, his situation is not as precarious as people seem to think.

    Tom H.
    I can’t agree with your conclusion that without CH, we won’t be challenging next season. After all, at this time last year, many of us were fearing the worse and thought we were going into freefall. Even after CH was appointed, because of the amoount of players that left, we all thought he had been given far too much to do. How wrong we were, CH led us on to one of the most exciting and entertaining season’s we have had for many a year.
    So while I agree that we must do everything within our power to keep hold of CH (I believe he WILL stay) let’s not start worrying about problems that may never materialise.

  • tom hill says:

    taz
    i believe whole heartedly the only reason we had the season we did was cos ov 1 person and 1 only! we lost, sold or released nearly 30 players and in my eyes it takes a certain kind ov person 2 bring a team that decimated back 2gether and do what we did last season! please tell me another man manager that was free at the time that cud have done what that man did 4us! i hpoe he will stay cos under his guidance and leadership i can only see good things from the blues, we are the sleeping giants of the midlands and with a new owner and CH in charge i believe we can become all we can and shud be!

  • Taz says:

    Tom,
    Believe me, I do share your concerns but, all that you are saying now, is what we were all saying last year. I don’t think there were many of us (at that time) that suspected CH was going to give us the season we have just had. CH performed against all odds and well above the wildest dreams of many Bluenoses. He has done a fantastic job and I dearly hope and pray we manage to retain his services long into the future. If Chris leaves, I will be devestated but, BCFC will still go on and I will be happy to support them (as, I am sure, will you)

    The only point I was making was that we should not meet trouble half way and start worrying about problems that we may never have. I know as Blues fans, we are used to getting kicked in the tender bits but, let’s wait until we have been kicked before we start feeling the pain. ;-)

  • Oldbluenose says:

    Taz, mate;, Your last paragraph of your posting,!!. Is the most ” common sense ” bit of reasoning yet,!!.
    We still have trials and tribulations to come, — The unknown regarding ownership and publication of our long overdue accounts,!!. So yes,!!, — Let us wait a bit longer before we start worrying, eh,!!.

  • Paul Carter says:

    Does the rolling contract mean that a potential club wanting Hughton only have to pay one years contact compo?

    • almajir says:

      Yes.

      Howvever, don’t be fooled by thinking a five year deal means five years compo. Normally a figure is built into a contract – and it normally maxes out at no more than a year or so’s salary.

      • NooBloo says:

        You ar only half right Almajir. Such clauses are not built into contracts; however you are correct that only a years compensation is usually paid. That is down to Employment Law guidelines set out by the European Union in that no employer can usually enforce an employment contract. It is therefore usually negotiated and it is quite standard practice for any contract buy out to be 1 years salary.

        The same happens if there is a 5 year contract in place and an employee is sacked. The standard payout is usually one years salary plus the tax free termination amount, which is currently £30,000.

        All of this is usually negotiated but all parties involved realise that if they took it to the courts then the courts would only award one years salary .

        The exceptions to this are only instances where ‘defimation of character’ or terminations of contracts due to race issues’ These instances have no upper limits

        • NooBloo says:

          Defimation of Character issues I mention above also include ”constructive dismissal”

          • Macc lad says:

            The £30000 sum you quote above Noobloo would only be tax free for a redundancy payment, which plainly a manager can never be (it’s the job that’s redundant, not the person). All these tax free payments are what’s getting football clubs in trouble a present. Have a look at Rangers v HMRC and the recent case of the worlds richest dog in Monte Carlo.

    • Lichfield Blue says:

      It’s diificult to be certain; for all we know there may be a compensation clause in CH’s existing contract! Whatever the situation, I just hope CH sees enough potential to persuade him to stay.

      • NooBloo says:

        Macc

        Termination payments of £30,000 are tax free when managers are made redundant and this has been agreed by HMRC because any new manager coming in to a club is invariably doing a totally different job from the last one.

        This is not in dispute by HMRC . THEY HAVE AGREED THIS

        Rangers tax problems are very different. They stem from paying players salaries in the form of loans, on which the individual players pay an official rate of interest, say 6% or 4% or 5% tax, rather than the 50% tax that the individual player would normally be due to pay and the emplyer ie Rangers pay Class1a NIC, surrently 13.8%.

        Rangers then write off the loans and the player gets to keep all of the money.

        HMRC are contending that these are not loans to the players and rather than paying an official small rate of interest annually mentioned above that the payments should have been taxed as salaries, with 50% tax deducted.

        After a PAYE audit HMRC are now seeking the difference to be paid by Rangers rather than the players themselves because HMRC claim that they willfully flouted HMRC PAYE tax and NIC laws. They are also seeking interest, penalties and surcharges on the shortfall.

        Sorry about the long windedness of this response but I can assure you that HMRC have agreed that Termination payments of £30,000 are tax free payments. THIS IS NOT IN DISPUTE OR QUESTION

  • WhooKed says:

    I have heard on the grape vine that Redmond is Tottenham bound, and that the loan signing of Towsend was a sweetner in the deal.

    • NooBloo says:

      Young Nathan is an obvious talent for the future but to be honest, he hasnt been able to maintain enough consistency yet to earn himself a constant run in the Birmingham side. He would be foolish to think that he would get more first team football at Tottenham

  • Paul Carter says:

    Couldn’t agree more Noo, consistency is the key. He was pants at Blackpool in the first leg and has been ineffectual in too many other games too but when he’s on his game he’s fantastic. We always build up our younger playes as the new TF after a couple of good games. People were talking up Mutch whilst he was out but saw his limitations when he came back and the irony was it was Fahey who shone this year the man the boo boys loved to hate. Sorely missed in the play offs.

  • andy says:

    Paul hit the nail on the head, Blues sorely missed Fahey in that midfield because that is the area where Blues lost the battle against Blackpool. Its water under the bridge now and we await those accounts promised to us by Mr Pannu before we can even speculate on CH or the players’ futures.


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