The Increasingly Common Practice of Self-Representation

The Increasingly Common Practice of Self-Representation
The concept of self-representation has gained a lot of attention in recent months since Kevin De Bruyne negotiated a new contract with Manchester City without using a football agent. The Belgian midfielder relied on tax and legal advice from his lawyers and was assisted by his father during the negotiations. De Bruyne is certainly not the first player to represent himself, nor will he be the last, but it is expected that more players will opt for a similar approach in the future. This article contains some reflections on self-representation by lawyers.

The case for self-representation

Recent developments suggest that athletes are increasingly aware of their need to control their careers both on and off the field, as the case may be with people they really trust, such as family or friends. Athletes represent an important sporting and commercial value, and especially high-profile athletes find themselves, surrounded by a team of specialist advisors, in an excellent position to manage their interests themselves. Delegating a sporting career, commercial deals and estate planning to one person, a football agent, entails clear risks. With a transfer system considered by many to be criminogenic[1]...

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