Football Governance - Culture, Media and Sport Committee Contents

Written evidence submitted by the Football Association

I refer to your letter dated 3 May 2011 in relation to Sir Dave Richards and a possible conflict of interest involving Glue Creative Production Solutions Limited ("Glue").

We are aware of the article that appeared in the Yorkshire Post on 21 April 2011 under the heading "Exclusive: Premier League boss's son won a series of football deals" which references amongst other things that Glue "secured deals" with "the Football Association's (FA) 2018 World Cup bid".

The World Cup Bid was operated through a separate subsidiary company—England 2018/2022 Limited ("England 2018"). Sir Dave was involved with England 2018 for a period of time but was not formally registered as a director of that company. Any conflict would have been declared to the subsidiary company, however, because this was a lower value contract for supply it was not a matter that received the England 2018 Board's attention and there is therefore no formal declaration of interest recorded at an England 2018 Board Meeting. Instead the matter was dealt with at a staff level principally through David Magliano who at the relevant time was the Director of Commercial and Marketing. England 2018 wished to obtain some promotional materials for the launch event in May 2009 and for other subsequent use and Glue provided some promotional materials/giveaways such as scarves, badges etc. Glue were appointed following a review procedure carried out by England 2018's event production agency Unspun and Glue were one of a number of suppliers used to provide promotional materials based on quality, price and ability to meet the relevant production timescale.

As you will be aware England 2018 no longer exists but The FA's Company Secretary Alistair Maclean has been in direct contact with Simon Johnson, the ex COO of England 2018, David Magliano and Unspun. These people have confirmed that there was no undue influence placed by Sir Dave on using Glue and the appointment was made at the staff level with the relevant people being aware that Sir Dave's son was involved in Glue Productions. Furthermore, as set out above Glue were one of a number of companies used for the supply of promotional materials.

The FA has also used Glue from time to time to provide low value gifts. They are one of a number of suppliers and similar to the position with 2018, the use of a supplier at this level has never been an issue that has warranted The FA Board's attention and the matter has therefore not been declared at Board level. Senior Executives within the Group were aware of the relationship between Sir Dave and Glue and those Executives are satisfied that no undue influence has been placed on any members of staff to utilise Glue.

In relation to your wider request about conflicts of interest with The FA, our constitution contains provisions relating to conflicts of interest which allow for conflicts of interest to be declared to The FA Board and there is a Directors Code of Conduct which specifically looks at conflicts at the Board level. The directors have also been given information about the provisions of the Companies Act.

I cannot comment on the conflicts of interest position within the Premier League.

I hope that this covers the points raised in your letter but if you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact me.

May 2011

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© Parliamentary copyright 2011
Prepared 29 July 2011