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Football League clubs spend £30.3m on agents’ fees

Football League clubs spent £30.3m on agents’ fees during the 11-month period of 1 October 2014 to 30 September 2015.

Championship clubs paid out more than nine times as much as League One clubs with a total of £26.1m being spent on transfers and unattached players. Cardiff were the biggest spenders with Vincent Tan paying £2.82m to agents who negotiated deals for Scott Malone, Stuart O’Keefe, Lee Peltier and Alex Revell among others.

While Rotherham United paid the lowest amount to agents and managed to survive the drop after improving their squad and paying £185,000, the figure of £26.1m represents a serious increase from 2013/14’s £14.7m total.

League One sides continued the trend of rising fees with the latest total of £3.17m up from 2014’s £2.4m, despite Bury appearing to spend nothing at all and Port Vale and Rochdale paying five-figure sums.

Wigan Athletic are easily the biggest spenders in the third tier and the only club to hit the million pound mark with accounts of £1.41m for a year in which they were relegated from the Championship.

League Two clubs saw a sharp rise with their contribution of £1.01m up from £595,000 the previous year.

Aside from Wigan, Portsmouth (£268,000) paid more money to agents than anyone else outside the Championship making the move for 15 targets on a permanent basis.

Like Bury, Accrington Stanley, for the second year in a row, and Hartlepool United spent no money on negotiations.

While under new owner Francesco Becchetti, Leyton Orient paid £137,000 to agents in a shopping spree that included Championship regulars Jobi McAnuff and Darius Henderson among others – an increase from the previous year’s total of £43,000 when owned by Barry Hearn.

The sharp rises are already being linked to the relaxed Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules which were first implemented in the 2013/2014 season and require Championship clubs to make a loss of no more than £5m.

Nottingham Forest and Blackburn Rovers failed to meet these regulations and have as a result been placed under embargo by the Football League, while QPR are the subject of legal proceedings about the full details of their accounts return.

In the summer, clubs voted to extend the Championship FFP threshold to a £13m loss. League One and League Two clubs are permitted to spend no more than 60% of their turnover on player wages.


Agent fees in full:

Sky Bet Championship

Birmingham City – £443,570
Blackburn Rovers – £1,254,610
Bolton Wanderers -£964,869
Brentford – £600,636
Brighton & Hove Albion – £912,421
Bristol City – £231,316
Burnley – £1,363,831
Cardiff City – £2,828,133
Charlton Athletic – £656,759
Derby County – £1,102,071
Fulham – £2,735,336
Huddersfield Town – £429,343
Hull City- £1,813,919
Ipswich Town – £261,347
Leeds United – £786,897
Middlesbrough – £850,285
MK Dons – £672,371
Nottingham Forest – £1,440,730
Preston North End – £194,961
QPR – £2,361,742
Reading – £2,391,666
Rotherham United – £185,430
Sheffield Wednesday – £792,203
Wolverhampton Wanderers – £849,600

Total – £26,124,044

Sky Bet League 1

Barnsley – £156,315
Blackpool – £79,750
Bradford City – £121,789
Burton Albion – £11,581
Bury – £0
Chesterfield – £68,259
Colchester United – £70,276
Coventry City – £104,015
Crewe Alexandra – £12,392
Doncaster Rovers – £64,924
Fleetwood Town – £57,988
Gillingham – £27,125
Millwall – £297,850
Oldham Athletic – £38,473
Peterborough United – £68,556
Port Vale – £7,000
Rochdale – £4,880
Scunthorpe United – £112,650
Sheffield United – £254,713
Shrewsbury Town – £23,705
Southend United – £46,893
Swindon Town – £60,251
Walsall – £17,491
Wigan Athletic – £1,461,088

Total – £3,167,964

Sky Bet League 2

Accrington Stanley – £0
Barnet – £29,987
Bristol Rovers – £28,392
Cambridge United – £84,091
Carlisle United – £34,924
Crawley Town – £15,750
Dagenham & Redbridge – £700
Exeter City – £19,560
Hartlepool United – £0
Leyton Orient – £136,642
Luton Town – £43,374
Mansfield Town – £15,335
Morecambe – £17,852
Newport County – £10,205
Northampton Town – £31,758
Notts County – £71,086
Oxford United – £40,565
Plymouth Argyle – £32,260
Portsmouth – £268,175
Stevenage – £7,495
AFC Wimbledon – £26,700
Wycombe Wanderers – £10,261
Yeovil Town – £55,807
York City – £27,000

Total – £1,007,920

Overall total – £30,299,928

This article was brought to you by The Football League Paper. On-sale every Sunday, the newspaper provides extensive coverage for all 72 Football League clubs with news, features and gossip plus comprehensive match reports.
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