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Tevez compensation saga rumbles on

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Most fans thought Monday’s estimated £20m out-of-court settlement between West Ham and Sheffield United had drawn the curtains on one of the longest-running compensation battles in English football but recent developments suggest the saga is set to continue.

The original argument stemmed from Carlos Tevez’s role in helping the Hammers avoid relegation in 2006/07 as the Blades were relegated on the last day of the season and argued that the Argentinean striker was ineligible to play.

While Sheffield United chairman Kevin McCabe declared himself “happy and satisfied” with the compensation his club received more litigants are now forming a disorderly queue behind him – with Ken Bates at the front of it.

“We sold a number of players to Sheffield United with contingencies,” Bates told Yorkshire Radio.  “When they got relegated on the last day of the season we missed out on a substantial sum.

“That’s what we lost and if they are being compensated for their loss we believe we should be compensated for our loss.”

The claim would focus on the sales of Rob Hulse, Matthew Kilgallon and Ian Bennett to the Blades as Leeds lost out on bonus payments following their Yorkshire rival’s relegation.

Meanwhile Professional Footballers’ Association chief executive, Gordon Taylor, confirmed that up to 20 Sheffield United players could take their own club to court, along with West Ham, to make up for the loss in wages they suffered following relegation.

Former manager Neil Warnock, now at Crystal Palace, has also said he is looking into the possibility of legal action against the Hammers.

West Ham, unsuprisingly, take a different viewpoint: “It is now becoming clear that the ruling by Lord Griffiths has encouraged a potentially endless legal chain of claims and counter claims, which can only be damaging to English football.

“As a club we will strongly resist any attempts to prolong this matter through the courts both to protect our interests and those of the wider game.

“There is a lot more at stake than the finances of West Ham United and we will do all we can to stop this matter ending in a form of legal anarchy.”

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