Charlton Athletic, Bolton and Wigan rivals punished for FA rule breach

Reading FC have been fined by the FA.Reading FC have been fined by the FA.
Reading FC have been fined by the FA.
League One outfit Reading have been charged by the FA for a breach of rules five years ago and slapped with a fine.

Charlton Athletic rivals Reading have been fined by the FA for a breach of rules which took place in 2019. It's the latest blow for the club, which has been dogged in recent seasons due to financial struggles under the ownership of Dai Yongge.

An independent regulatory commission proved charges put against three Reading employees and an agent about payments contingent on a future transfer. The Athletic reports that the deal in question is a contract signed by current Crystal Palace star Michael Olise with the Berkshire club in 2019.

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The club was fined £200,000 for the misdemeanour. Reading's former chief executive officer Nigel Howe has been fined £5,000 and suspended for 12 months, which includes 'all football and football-related activity' in the second six months of the ban. Head of football operations Michael Gilkes and club secretary Sue Hewett were warned over their future conduct.

Glen Tweneboah, who is a registered intermediary still acting on behalf of Olise, was fined £15,000 and will serve a six-month ban beginning on October 4, which will allow him to work on any potential summer transfer for the Crystal Palace man. 

A statement from Reading said: "The Club would like to state publicly that it is extremely disappointed with the decision and with the fact that, in addition to charges against the Club, charges were brought against individual club officials who were acting to protect a valuable club asset and ultimately the best interests of Reading Football Club. 

"All clubs are extremely vulnerable to losing talented players that they have spent many years nurturing and developing. It remains a challenge to navigate and negotiate such deals in the best interests of the football club and these young players. On this one occasion, the Club’s conduct fell short of the high standards with which we usually operate, and the Club is committed to ensuring this will not happen again.

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Reading have expressed frustration with the FA charges.Reading have expressed frustration with the FA charges.
Reading have expressed frustration with the FA charges.

"Nigel, Sue and Michael, have each worked for and represented Reading FC in an exemplary fashion for over twenty years. There has been no prior history of offences, nor any since. The Club will continue offering the relevant support to the individuals concerned.

"The Club views these sanctions as excessive, in particular when considered in comparison to sanctions handed down in a previous case, which involved another professional football club and multiple breaches of The FA’s Intermediary Regulations over a ten year period. In our view, in that context, the treatment handed down to Reading Football Club, for a stand-alone, one-off incident seems exceptionally harsh."

It's the latest blow for the Berkshire club, which finished 17th, level on points and one place below Charlton in the third tier this season. The Royals were deducted six points this season, after failing to meet HMRC payment obligations, and would have finished 15th without that punishment.

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