Written by Andy Tattersall
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Wednesday, 7 April 2004

The English Football Association are to cull the numbers of football agents in an attempt to stabilise the modern game.
The cull, which is planned for the start of the 2004/2005 season, will reduce the present number of football agents from 275,000 to around 60,000.
Speaking at a press conference held at Chelsea's Stamford Bridge ground, the FA's media spokesman Paul Barber said: "The FA have had very little option but to bring about this cull."
"The number of football agents have grown beyond a manageable number with some players having up to 20 agents apiece. Many managers have approached us in the past with regards to the influence these agents are having on the game and some have asked if they could take matters into their own hands," Barber added.
Barber went on: "We realised that we had to deal with the matter promptly after we received a call from Liverpool Manager Gerrad Houllier asking if he could install gun towers at their training ground."
The FA have handed the job of culling the agents over to two private contractors with a gang of Triads dealing with northern agents, whilst southern agents will be exterminated by a Jamaican Yardie crew.
Newcastle United boss Bobby Robson said he was pleased at the outcome.
Robson said: "At last the FA are doing something about this vermin. I remember when I was in my playing days we had just one agent to share between the whole country."
Also singing the praises of the FA's decision was Manchester United Manager Alex Ferguson, who admitted to once driving around with an agent locked in the boot of his car until they agreed to get Rio Ferdinand to sign for the league champions.
Ferguson quipped: "The boy wouldn't let me talk to young Rio so I gave him a Govern taxi ride."
Leeds United will probably fair best from all the 92 English professional clubs since they have a total of 3,500 agents on their books most of who were left behind after the Harry Kewell move to Liverpool.

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