Lawyer to carry out independent review of PFA Charity

The unnamed specialist charity lawyer will work closely with the Charity Commission, which is still running a statutory inquiry into the charity

(Photograph: Steve Bardens/Getty Images)
(Photograph: Steve Bardens/Getty Images)

A lawyer is to carry out an independent review of the charity connected to the Professional Footballers’ Association amid concerns about its governance and management. 

The regulator said today it had agreed terms for a review of the governance, management and finances of the PFA Charity, which is the charitable arm of the trade union for professional footballers.

The review will be carried out by a specialist charity lawyer, whose identity has not been announced, after a proposal by the charity’s trustees, the regulator said. 

The commission said the reviewer would work closely with the regulator’s statutory inquiry, which is ongoing, and would “inform the regulator of any information that may be relevant to the ongoing inquiry”. 

The commission said it had worked with the charity’s trustees to “expand the scope of the issues to be considered” by the reviewer. 

The regulator announced in January that it had opened a statutory inquiry into the PFA Charity.

The inquiry is looking at whether the charity’s activities are exclusively charitable and for the public benefit after questions were raised about the management of the organisation, including the links between the union’s charitable arm and the salary of the PFA’s chief executive, Gordon Taylor.

Taylor received a total remuneration package of £2.2m in 2016/17, according to the PFA's own accounts.

The PFA Charity’s accounts from 2017/18 showed that it spent £4m on staff costs but had no employees.

The organisation agreed to an independent review in 2018, around the time when the commission opened a regulatory compliance case on the charity.

The commission said in January that, despite "extensive engagement" with the PFA, it still had serious concerns about the management of the charity.

This included its relationship and transactions with other organisations and whether they were in the charity’s best interests, and whether its activities were exclusively charitable and for the public benefit.

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