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World Sports Advocate

Volume: 10 Issue: 10
(October 2012)


An independent external commission will investigate allegations that the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) was complicit in Lance Armstrong’s doping, the UCI announced on 26 October. The UCI will nominate an ‘independent sports body’ in the week starting 5 November, which will nominate members for an independent commission to deliver a report and recommendations by 1 June 2013. / read more

The European Commission (EC) is considering recommending Member States ban athletes from betting on all sports or the sport that they are involved in, as part of its Action Plan on Online Gambling announced 23 October. An EC spokesperson said a total ban is possible, but added “nothing is set in stone: we will work with Member States and draw from what is out there”. A ban on the taking of bets on youth sport is also being considered. / read more

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) confirmed that the UK Court of Appeal has jurisdiction to hear a case (C-173/11) brought by Football DataCo against Sportradar on 18 October. The CJEU held that where a person located in Member State A sends data previously uploaded by that person from a database protected by the sui generis right under Directive 96/9 (the Database Directive) to a customer in Member State B, this constitutes an illegal act of ‘re-utilisation’ of the data, as long as it can be proved that the person intentionally targeted customers in Member State B. This means that the person may be sued in Member State B. / read more


England’s Football Association (FA) chose to refer a case involving alleged racism by John Terry to the police ahead of carrying out their own sanctioning process under FA rules. Katie Simmonds, Head of Sports Law at Burlingtons Legal LLP, explores why the FA took this approach given that previous jurisprudence suggested that prioritising criminal proceedings was not essential. She explains the pitfalls of this approach and the lessons it offers for sport. / read more

As evidenced at World Sports Law Report’s Sport & Gambling 2012 conference on 9 October, sport, gambling operators, governments and international organisations are working closer together than ever before to protect sport from corruption. Dr. Laila Mintas, Head of Legal and International Development for Early Warning System GmbH, examines the scale of the problem and the difficulties involved in prosecuting those involved in match fixing and explains that the European Union needs to take a lead by setting minimum national regulations on match-fixing. / read more

Exclusive distribution models have restricted retail competition in the replica football kit market. This has allowed many clubs to continue to increase prices to the detriment of a loyal supporter base. Richard Craig, an Associate with Taylor Wessing, explains how the internet has contributed to this problem by allowing clubs to retain exclusive distribution whilst expanding market reach. He also examines whether football clubs using exclusive distribution may be contravening competition law by abusing a dominant market position. / read more

This summer, London Welsh was successful in appealing a Rugby Football Union decision to exclude the club from the Aviva Premiership for failing to meet its requirement to have ‘primacy of tenure’ at its stadium. Alex Haffner, a Senior Associate with SNR Denton, explains the guidance this decision provides to sports governing bodies as to how susceptible their rules that have a commercial impact on their members are to challenge. He also examines what criteria can be used to determine whether such rules qualify for the ‘sporting exception’ to European law, as defined in the Meca-Medina case. / read more

Optus’s TV Now service allowed users to view previously broadcasted sports with just a two-minute delay. After a prolonged court battle, the Australian High Court has ruled that TV Now infringes copyrights that the Australian Football League and National Rugby League had grated to Telstra. Amelia Lynch and James O’Toole, of Lander & Rogers, explain the reasoning behind the decision. / read more

The system of football transfer windows came into effect following negotiations with the European Commission in the 2002/3 season. Adam Berry, a Solicitor with the Financial Services Authority, argues that the system would not survive a challenge under European Union freedom of movement legislation, as it is a disproportionate restriction on both clubs and players. / read more

Since UEFA's Financial Fair Play concept was first announced in 2009, there has been much speculation about what types of income will be included in UEFA's calculation of a club's revenue and the sanctions that will apply to clubs that don't adhere to the rules. Daniel Clyne, a law student recently graduated from Nottingham University, highlights a few inconsistencies that UEFA will need to address. / read more

About World Sports Advocate

The monthly law publication providing guidance on all aspects of sports law, including licensing and sports data, anti-doping and doping sanctions, TV and broadcasting rights, sport technology, players agents, disciplinary measures, sports integrity, sports betting, player contracts, intellectual property, transfer regulations, sports sponsorship and marketing, and governance, as well as coverage of key legal cases, sporting regulations and governing bodies including the IOC, UEFA and FIFA and sporting events such as London 2012. / read more

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