Terry hit by Wembley allegations as Capello ponders England captaincy
John Terry will go in to crucial talks with England manager Fabio Capello today amid fresh allegations.
Reports this morning allege that use of Terry’s personal corporate box at Wembley for England’s game against Egypt next month was offered to an undercover reporter by a third-party for £4,000 in cash.
Terry, who earns around £7.5m a year, agreed a long-term contract for the £120,000-a-year 12-seat luxury box two years ago. Any hiring out of the box is a breach of contract unless it is done through the official Club Wembley re-sale program.
Sources have confirmed to the Daily Telegraph that Terry has tried to get out of the contract, telling Wembley officials that he can no longer afford or justify the expense.
Terry was told his contract was binding, but Wembley offered him a £45,000 discount in exchange for use of his image to endorse the boxes and the stadium. They also requested that Terry make a personal appearance for Club Wembley season ticket holders, but his advisors declined.
Terry’s advisors told Wembley officials that he was no longer using the box and he has since signed the contract over to a company controlled by his management, Sports Marketing and Promotions. The box is understood to have been in regular use at sporting events and concerts last year. The arrangement is entirely proper and within Terry’s agreement with Wembley.
The allegations of Terry’s affair with the former girlfriend of England team-mate Wayne Bridge have already placed the Chelsea defender’s captaincy of the national side in question, and the latest claims may add to the pressure on Capello to remove the armband. The pair are expected to meet this afternoon for face-to-face talks before Capello makes a decision.
The latest reports will increase scrutiny of Terry’s finances. Earlier this week the Daily Telegraph revealed that Terry is in dispute with former agent Aaron Lincoln over his fees for negotiating Terry’s £4m a year sponsorship contract with Umbro. Lincoln is thought to be owed as much as £800,000 in fees, which Terry is disputing.
In December Terry was revealed to have offered a guided tour of Chelsea’s training ground, with a charity payment of £10,000 passed to an associate.
Last autumn Terry’s management company Elite Management commissioned an agency to seek sponsorship for Terry which resulted in a round-robin email touting the player’s commercial appeal as “England football captain”.
A spokesman for Terry said this morning that he was unaware of his box being offered and that no third-party was authorised to act for the player or his management.
“John knew nothing about this,” he said. “John does not control the box any more. He signed it over to his management company to see if they could use it and try and justify the expense.
“A third-party rang John’s management and asked if it was possible to get the box for the Egypt game and was told it was not available for hire as they would be using it.”