Media litigators swarm on BBC after Panorama football expose

A flock of media boutiques is circling the BBC after it aired an episode of Panorama about corruption in football.

Sam Allardyce, manager of Bolton Wanderers FC, has instructed Mark Stephens at Finers Stephens Innocent after comments were made alleging he took money over transfers. Craig Allardyce has instructed Graham Atkins of Atkins Solicitors.

Bolton Wanderers FC has separately instructed a Brabners Chaffe Street team led by joint senior partner Maurice Watkins, and including Edward Canty.

The documentary featured secretly-filmed footage of agents discussing illegal payments over player transfers. In-house BBC lawyer Roger Law will lead the BBC’s defence.

Kevin Bond, the Newcastle United first team coach, has instructed David Price Solicitors and Advocates, after his appearance on the documentary.

Bond was assistant to Portsmouth FC manager Harry Redknapp, when the show was filmed, and he too made an appearance and has alerted defamation boutique Schillings.

David Price said he would sue the BBC for libel: “The short extract from my client’s conversation with the reporter was taken out of context and presented in a completely misleading manner. It was all smoke and mirrors.”

Liverpool FC has consulted partner Richard Green at Hill Dickinson after football agent Peter Harrison, who is represented by Charles Russell‘s head of media and entertainment Duncan Lamont, was filmed offering Middlesbrough’s England youth player Nathan Porritt to the club.