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Vultures in trouble ... again

Filed: Tuesday, 7th July 2009
By: Staff Writer

Sheffield United could potentially face a multi-million pound claim from Preston North End after Blades goalkeeper Paddy Kenny failed a drugs test.

Kenny was tested postive for a banned substance following a test taken prior to last season's Championship semi-final play-off - a tie that the Blades won 2-1 on aggregate and saw them coin in from a lucrative play-off final tie with Burnley.

The goalkeeper was credited with a major part in the second semi-final which Sheffield United won 1-0; the Daily Mail noted how Kenny produced a 'full-length save from Jon Parkin' during the second half.

The goalkeeper also had a hand in the Blades' goal in the first leg, the Mail again reporting how "Kenny sent a ball upfield, Lonergan did well to save at Greg Halford’s feet and the ball squirted out to the right where it was retrieved by Ward, who delivered a cross that was thumped home on the full by Howard."

Kenny - who is likely to receive a lengthy ban and fine from the FA following his failed test - could also cost his club massive damages should Preston decide to proceed with legal action.

North End could now claim that they were denied the chance of appearing in a showpiece Wembley play-off final and the chance of reaching the Premier League as a result of the goalkeeper's presence - and with Lord Griffiths setting a precedent in last year's case with West Ham United when he declared that one player can affect not just one game, but the course of an entire season - the Blades could now be on the receiving end of a decision which proved so lucrative for them in the Carlos Tevez case.

Griffiths on Tevez: September 2008

"We think it more likely than not on the evidence that we heard, that even over the final two games of the season, West Ham would have achieved at least three points less overall without Mr Tevez. He played outstandingly well in the two wins that West Ham secured in those last two games."

Bramall Shame: getting away with murder

June 2007: Premier League investigate claims that the Blades broke rule U18 relating to third-party influence in the transfer of Steve Kabba to Watford.

September 2008: Sheffield United win millions in damages from West Ham United at the fourth attempt in the Carlos Tevez case.

November 2008: Sheffield Utd defender Chris Morgan leaves Barnsley striker Iain Hume fighting for life after a vicious on-field assault.

January 2009: Blades accused of third-party influence in the transfer of Matthew Spring from Luton to Charlton.

March 2009: Sunderland, Preston, West Bromwich Albion and Leeds United announce plans for legal action against the Blades for failing to comply with 'certain contractual conditions'.

April 2009: Barnsley FC announce plans to sue United for the loss of Iain Hume.

June 2009: Former Sheffield Utd boss Neil Warnock's Crystal Palace fined £20,000 and deducted one point for fielding an ineligible player.

July 2009: Blades 'keeper Paddy Kenny - who played in all three Championship play-off ties - fails a drugs test.

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by Rosco
02:38PM 9th Jul 2009
''As much as i would like to see the Vultures (and McCabe for that matter) squirm I feel that nothing approaching the amounts paid out by us will arise.
I feel that Griffiths has set a precedent in his ruling of the Tevez incident that shall never be repeated as his incompetence has sent shudders through the Football community as a whole, they shall probably escape with no more than a £100,000 fine and maybe a 3 point deduction for the start of the season.

Justice - not at all.''

by Irish Hammer
09:12AM 9th Jul 2009
''I can't help that feel satisfied that they're getting what they deserve, but I think the article is not necessary because we shouldn't concern ourselves with what's happening to that club - we should be more focused on what's happening with the 'Ammers.

Having said that a great website for Hammers fans, especially those of us that live abroad!''

by innerfury
04:12PM 8th Jul 2009
''Pete, your comments are spot on - but sod it, I hope they get sued.''

by moorethemerrier
05:54PM 7th Jul 2009
''The 'beautiful game' has been dying for years, Griffiths, in his infinite wisdom merely finished it off. I hope Sh*tfield Utd and their chairman, crash and burn. ''

by JK
02:59PM 7th Jul 2009
''As soon as I heard about this drug test I started hoping that some poetic justice might be on its way...''

by Norton Hemsworth
02:43PM 7th Jul 2009
''For the club to be liable I think it would have to be proven that they gave him the banned substance. The club would have to be seen to be complicit in his actions. In the Tevez case the WHU board was involved hence the club's liabiltiy. I doubt that PNE have a case in this instance but if they do it's probably Kenny who is liable rather than SUFC.''

by Trev
11:43AM 7th Jul 2009
''The precedent they have set with their lawsuit against us looks like it may well come back and bite them in the bum, but there is now a massive problem in the game thanks to the idiot Griffiths. Sheff Utd should never have been allowed to proceed with their case, as now the door is wide open for everyone to be sued for any contravention of any rule.

We will never know what would have happened had we not signed Tevez, but you could argue that before he arrived at the club we were looking far better and probably wouldn't have been involved in a relegation scrap. You could argue that Sheff Utd might have beaten PNE with a different keeper, but we'll never know.

Personally I hope they get stung for a huge fine and then everyone wakes up and stops the lawsuit merry go round. Crap happens in football and we deal with it.

PS Is it too late to sue Hackett?''

by Edward Webster
11:37AM 7th Jul 2009
''Finally Sheffield United are getting taken from all angles, this is great cos the more they moan the bigger the fine...''

by Tell it how it is Chartley
07:47AM 7th Jul 2009
''What was the banned substance? ''

by Toby
07:13AM 7th Jul 2009
''What goes around comes around. Marvellous stuff.''

by g portugal
06:46AM 7th Jul 2009
''Payback is a witch. Arrogance gets found out and filth gets slaughtered, just like sub-prime selling scum.''

by Pete
06:43AM 7th Jul 2009
''As much as it pains me to say it, I hope they don't get sued for any of it. Don't get me wrong, I think vulture is a good word to describe Sheffield United, but let's not forget that Griffiths is the culprit here. It was widely touted that his landmark decision had the potential to ruin football, and if all of the above clubs do sue the Blades... well that would be it.

The satisfaction we would get from seeing Sheffield writhe in financial agony would be completely overshadowed by the fear I hold for the beautiful game. You'll have everyone filing lawsuits against everyone else; huge swathes of club funds will be earmarked for legal disputes instead of being invested in football.

I hate what as happened as a fan of football, it just so happens as a fan of West Ham I'm right in the middle of it.''

by marleeeen depreciation society
03:39AM 7th Jul 2009
''Fingers crossed for Preston, pity Griffiths has virtually ruined the game with his clueless opinion.''

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