The Sun says Premier League offered referee Mark Halsey hush money: newspaper did not hack his phone
THE Sun is serialising Surviving cancer, death threats and the Premier League, by former Premier League football referee Mark Halsey.
The paper trails the book by telling Sun readers:
Vikki Orvice writes:
MARK HALSEY today claims football authorities demanded the right to stop him publishing his explosive book on what it is really like to be a top referee. The Sun began exclusively serialising his blockbuster book on Sunday but, according to Halsey, it is an autobiography his employers did not want to see released.
He said: “I was offered a £50,000 pay-off to leave at the end of the season but it came with a clause. It would have meant that I would need their permission, their approval, if I wanted to write my book. I would even need permission if I wanted to tell my story on TV, radio or at after-dinner speeches. There were times I thought to myself ‘Take the £50,000’ but I believed the story of what goes on as a referee and the pressures they are under, as well as the story of my cancer, was an inspiring one that deserved and needed to be told.”
The thing is that it isn’t only Halsey who’s offered 50k to keep quiet. We know this because in what might have been a pre-exclusive exclusive, Jim White told his Telegraph readers:
“When referees leave the service, they are granted a £50,000 severance payment. But only if they sign a confidentiality agreement indicating they will not talk about any aspect of their refereeing life.”
Mark Halsey feels like a liberated man. When, back in May, he retired after 20 years’ service as a Premier League referee it was, he insists, like having the shackles removed.
Or as the Sun says in an exclusive: “SHACKLED.”
PS – As for the horror of the truth hiding behind a pay-off to stay quiet can this be the same Sun whose owners News Group Newspapers paid out more than £1m to settle legal cases that threatened to reveal evidence of his journalists’ repeated involvement in the use of criminal methods to get stories? (It is – ed.)