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Six key points for footballers to consider when signing their first professional contract

Handshake with football field in background
Friday, 07 April 2017 By Thomas Barnard

All too often the back pages of the national press are littered with stories of young, gifted footballers who have found themselves hitting the headlines for all the wrong reasons. Whether it's a legal scrape with their club or The FA, or (worse still) serious criminal offences, it doesn't seem unusual for young players to end up in the news for their off-field activity, rather than on-field performances. At the time of writing, it has been reported that two promising young French players, signed to Paris St Germain and Toulouse, have been sacked by their clubs for alleged involvement in a pellet gun attack.[1] Not a great start to a professional career at top flight clubs.

Whilst this guide doesn't address moral or ethical questions, it hopes to serve as a useful and practical tool for educating young players about some of the most important legal principles and sets of rules that they should be aware of when signing their first professional contract.

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Written by

Thomas Barnard

Thomas Barnard

Tom is a Senior Associate Solicitor specialising in commercial litigation and sports law. He acts for a wide variety of high-profile athletes, including cricketers, footballers, gymnasts and cyclists.

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