Date: 16th February 2007 at 10:30am
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Former Owls midfielder-turned football agent Darryl Powell has blasted Manchester United’s Gary Neville after the defender revealed football agents should be removed from the game.

The former Derby and Portsmouth midfielder, who played eight times for the Owls between January 2003 and July 2003, responded to comments from the England international that players shouldn’t be so reliant on agents.

But Powell told Channel Four news: ‘Gary hasn’t got a clue. He is a very good football player but he has been at Manchester United from the age of 10 or 11 and he’s never moved. In terms of agency, he doesn’t know what it entails.

‘The guys (I have worked with) have been happy with the moves, the clubs have been happy and the former clubs have got paid. Be it houses, commercial property or stock dealing, there’s always a middle man. Football is a business.’

The role of football agents in the game has come under close scrutiny in recent months after Luton Town’s Mike Newell named an agent who he says attempted to bribe him.

And BBC’s Panorama programme revealed a number of agents who claimed to have made illegal payments to secure transfer dealings with Bolton manager Sam Allardyce.

Neville said: ‘I’d like to see the removal of agents from the game – make players not so reliant on them. We’ve got the PFA – and they want to give, not take.’

He continued: ‘Our guy can go in (to a deal) and expect to be giving hundreds of thousands or, in this day and age, even millions (to an agent) – and that money is going out of the game. The clubs should keep that money – or, if they’re earning it, the players.’