Charles Russell scores Appeal Court win for FA

Charles Russell has clinched a win for the Football Association (FA) in the Court of Appeal against England footballer Wayne Rooney’s agent Paul Stretford.

The ruling was crucial, as it decided the future ‘Rule K’ of the FA’s conduct handbook.

Rule K states that internal arbitration is compulsory during disciplinary proceedings.

Halliwells, representing Stretford, argued that Rule K contravened the 1998 Human Rights Act and wanted to suspend the FA’s disciplinary proceedings against Stretford.

Blackstone Chambers barrister Adam Lewis, acting for the FA, said: “The judgment vindicates the fact that the arbitral system of the FA is compliant with Article 6 of the Human Rights Convention.”

Stretford and the FA are now preparing arbitration proceedings. Lewis said: “Technically the case is still up and running. The Court of Appeal was just a part of it.”

The FA issued disciplinary proceedings against Stretford over his acquisition of the right to represent Rooney in 2002. He is accused of three breaches of the FA’s code of conduct.

Halliwells commercial litigation partner Julian Diaz-Rainey led the team representing Stretford, instructing Victor Joffe QC of Serle Court and David Casement at Exchange Chambers.

Partners Patrick Russell and Stuart Hey led the Charles Russell team advising the FA, instructing Blackstone’s David Pannick QC and Lewis.