Player agents – greedy money grabbing bastards bleeding the game dry, or necessary evils to help players counter the clubs always out to shaft them? It’s a debate that generates much heat, and until now, very little light.

Following on from instituting a fit-and-proper-person test, the Football League have published a report on payments to player agents. The first aim of this was to bring some facts to the debate. Implicit within the policy, it seems, is the idea that if a club’s fans see how much money has been given by them to the agent, they can judge whether they think it’s reasonable. If they don’t, then they can bring about pressure at a local level to get the club to change it’s practices.

If there’s one criticism, I’d like to see what proportion of the total amount of money spent on player transfers went to agents (both by club and as a total). It gives a percentage of transactions involved an agent, but it’s be good to know what proportion of the money left the game. But that’s a minor quibble really, and ontop of that fit-and-proper-person test, congratulations to the League.