By Ollie Irish
Sports management firm Proactive has lost its £4.3 million lawsuit against Wayne Rooney – it’s Wazza’s first big win in a while (boom tish).
Rooney stood accused of withholding commission on multi-million pound deals brokered by Proactive, who used to represent him.
Rooney made no payments after football agent Paul Stretford, founder of Proactive and the man who originally signed Rooney in 2002, left the firm under a cloud in 2008, taking Rooney with him.
Proactive argued that as contracts for Rooney and WAG Coleen were brokered by Stretford while he was still working for them, they were still due the 20% commission on several big-money sponsorship deals, amounting to a cool £4.3 million.
But Judge Brendan Hegarty, who postponed his ruling at Manchester Mercantile Court until after the World Cup in South Africa, said the original contract Rooney signed with Proactive amounted to a “restraint of trade” as it was up to eight years long when the Football Association recommended a maximum of just two years.
Hegarty ruled that Proactive was entitled to a “restitutional remedy” amounting to around £90,000. The judge also rejected an application to appeal from the firm’s lawyers.
In a statement, Rooney said: “I am delighted to have won this case.”
“Coleen and I have always been happy to pay all commissions due to the people who were owed them. But these sums were a joke and we felt they were just an attempt to exploit us.
“Fortunately the judge has knocked back their massively over-inflated claims and we are happy to pay the very small sum awarded.”
He added: “Finally, and most importantly, I would like to thank my Mum and Dad for their help, support and values they have given me.”