The two-day Premier League inquiry into the alleged Ashley Cole ‘tapping-up’ affair will get underway today.
Cole is alleged to have met Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho and Blues chief executive Peter Kenyon in January, thus contravening Rule K5, which prevents under-contract players talking to other clubs without the permission of their employers. while . Mourinho was charged under Rule Q, governing a manager’s conduct.
Chelsea’s charge relates to Rule K3 and governs clubs approaching players.
Cole’s agent Jonathan Barnett is also reported to have been at the meeting – along with Pini Zahavi – but they will not face any action for attending the meeting.
“For it to be suggested that I cynically set up a meeting with Chelsea and dragged them to it almost against their will is, quite frankly, ludicrous,” said Barnett recently.
An earlier Premier League statement read: “As licensed agents, Mr Jonathan Barnett and Mr Pini Zahavi do not fall within the jurisdiction of the FA Premier League for the purposes of this matter.”
Mourinho has been quoted as saying: “The facts are there. I know nothing about it. I don’t want to know. I’m not worried with it. My life is the same, trying to enjoy my work, my life. I’ve nothing else to say.”
Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein commented: “When the News of the World broke the story, I spoke to Peter Kenyon, Pini Zahavi and Jonathan Barnett.
“They were all in denial. However, from the evidence I have seen so far, there is a huge credibility gap.”
It hhjas been suggested that Chelsea could be docked points although affine seems the more likely punishment.