Date: 2nd February 2007 at 12:46pm
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News is emerging that two Premiership clubs might be facing investigation after allegations have been made that West Ham and Portsmouth may have been fielding illegible players.

Wigan Athletic, along with other Premiership clubs are suggesting that there is a possibility that Pompey have broken Rule U18, which states that ‘No Club shall enter into a contract which enables any other party to that contract to acquire the ability materially to influence its policies or the performance of its teams.’ The player in question for Pompey is Manuel Fernandes, who has of course now left the club.

If this is proved to be true, then Pompey could face losing points for the matches in which Fernandes has played in. Benfica own 50% of Fernandes, whilst the remaining part is owned privately. This was highlighted when Everton attempted to sign Fernandes on loan but the move was blocked by the Premiership due to Rule U18. The match between Portsmouth and Everton at Fratton Park was a 2-0 win for Pompey, it is understood that Everton may well now claim the points as Fernandes was playing in that match.

Any points deduction would seriously jeopardise any hope of Pompey reaching Europe, West Ham may even find themselves in a worse position if they too have points deducted – relegation is already a strong possibility for them.

The Daily Mail are currently running a larger article on this in their paper today.