The footballing world has its share of ups and down. While most of the fans get to witness the brighter and rosier side of the game, there’s no denying that football does have a fair bit of dark side to it. And one such area would undoubtedly be the tapping up of players.
When it comes to tapping, football’s premier governing bodies have some of the strictest rules there is. But that certainly does not mean that clubs no do indulge in tapping. There have been numerous cases of tapping of a player. While most of them are met with harsh punishments, every now and then some tappings do become successful and players do shift clubs.
Here are a list of 5 players who shifted loyalties as a result of tappings from clubs, directly or indirectly:
1. Ashley Cole to Chelsea:
Ashley Cole became a Chelsea player in 2006 but that was not before some controversy. Ashley Cole met a series of senior Chelsea officials during 2005 – while still being an Arsenal player. And these senior officials included the likes of Peter Kenyon as well as Jose Mourinho. Arsenal came out and said that Cole had carried out the meeting without asking the club’s permissions as a result of which the English International was fined £75,000 for his actions. But this monetary penalty did not do anything to stop Ashley Cole from wearing the Blue of Chelsea next season.
2. Jaap Stam to Manchester United:
When Jaap Stam released his autobiography one of the most shocking revelations that he had made in it was the fact that Sir Alex Ferguson had tapped him up while he was still a PSV player. Stam claimed that he had met the manager for 30 minutes where he discussed how his future at Old Trafford would shape up. He also went on to claim that his current club at that time (PSV) had no idea that such meeting had taken place.
It was only after talking to Stam and convincing him to join United, did Ferguson officially approach PSV.
3. Gael Kakuta to Chelsea:
Kakuta was an RC Lens youth team product who stayed with the French club from 1999 up until 2007. In 2007 the player joined Chelsea’s youth team and immediately Lens accused the Blues of tapping-up. Lens accused Chelsea of making illegal contacts with the player as a result of which the boy moved to Chelsea’s youth academy.
This tapping-up by Chelsea was met with some harsh punishments initially where the Blues were slapped with a transfer ban and the player was banned from playing. But both the punishments were quickly lifted after Chelsea made an appeal.
4. Paul Pogba to Manchester United:
Yes, you heard that right. Paul Pogba became a United player as a result of tapping-up by the Reds’ management. You see after RC Lens went public with Chelsea’s conducts in the deal of Kakuta, a lot of French clubs after that incident decided to open up publicly about how certain Premier League clubs had been regularly tapping-up on their youngsters. And one such French club was La Havre.
La Havre claimed that Pogba’s family was refusing to sign a new contract with the club because Man Utd were offering far greater money for the youngster. Even though FIFA later cleared Manchester United of any wrongdoings La Havre till date claim that FIFA did not validate the transfer of Paul Pogba, they merely issued a provisional international certificate.
5. Dwight Yorke to Manchester United:
Another Manchester United player on the list.
Dwight Yorke was wanted by Sir Alex Ferguson back in 1998 but his then current club Aston Villa made it clear that he was not for sale. But when news of the interest reached Yorke, he immediately handed in a transfer request at Villa and performed poorly. Forcing the club to sell him to Manchester United, where he went on to win the treble.