Sam Stapleton agent column on Luis Suarez race row

Mr Agent: Liverpool should have handled Suarez race row better

Mr Agent: Sam Stapleton

Sam
Stapleton, an FA licensed players' agent and co-founder of Star
Management Signings Ltd (right), has signed up for Sportsmail to give
our readers an agent's insight into the transfer window and football's
big talking points.

Read his thoughts on Liverpool's handling of the Luis Suarez race row…

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I mentioned last week that I was going to the Liverpool versus Oldham game. It ended up being a game that made the news for the wrong reasons.

I thought Oldham played well and put together a very good effort. The obvious bad point was the racial abuse that youngster Tom Adeyemi from Oldham reportedly received from one of the Liverpool fans.

Pointing the finger: Tom Adeyemi was upset at alleged racist abuse from the Kop

Pointing the finger: Tom Adeyemi was upset at alleged racist abuse from the Kop

From where I was sitting you could see that the young lad was very upset with something that had been said. Both sets of players were trying to console him. Racism seems to be rearing its ugly head again and there isn’t any room for it in football or in any sport.

It needs to be tackled head on and the punishment needs to be severe to set an example. Can Liverpool be blamed for one of their fans allegedly saying what he said Can they be expected to really control every single fan and what they say No, I don’t think they can.

However, I do think that the way they have handled the Luis Suarez situation has suggested that in some circumstances it’s okay, but it is not.

No matter what anyone says and in what language, racism should not be tolerated under any circumstances. I personally think that if Liverpool had the opportunity now, they may have handled the matter a little differently.

Controversial move: Liverpool wore t-shirts in support of Suarez

Controversial move: Liverpool wore t-shirts in support of Suarez

Window of opportunity

Our window has been going well so far with a few opportunities for good deals. We have a Premier League player possibly going to Turkey, a couple of Championship players to China and a couple of players in to the Premier League and Championship. If these deals get done then I’ll let you know the details but as an agency it’s very important for us to keep things confidential until deals are complete.

Kiernan Hughes-Mason has moved to Grimsby from Kettering and is looking forward to the new challenge. He gave his all for Kettering and had a very good relationship with the fans there but had to move due to the issues at the club. He is now under contract with Grimsby until the end of the season so we hope that he’ll do well and get some games under his belt.

Paul Downing is doing well on loan at Barnet from West Bromwich. At 20 years old, it’s vital that he gets first team games under his belt, no matter at what level. He has a chance of getting to Wembley if they can beat Swindon in the JPT semi final.

Tom Naylor got himself onto the bench for Derby County against Crystal Palace for the first time. It may be that Tom is another player that needs to go out on loan to get first team games until the summer and then hit the ground running for the new season.

Easing in: Nigel Clough named Tom Naylor on the bench for Derby's third round win over Palace

Easing in: Nigel Clough named Tom Naylor on the bench for Derby's third round win over Palace

Gabor Hungary for action

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Star Management Signings

A few years ago we put Gabor Gyepes into Cardiff, a Hungarian international central defender who was originally brought into the country by Glenn Hoddle at Wolves.

He did very well there but picked up an incredibly bad injury and after close to two years of rehab he made a return to Northampton under Stuart Gray, who was Glenn’s assistant at Wolves. He once again did well at Northampton and got a move back into the Championship with Cardiff.

After a good first season things haven’t gone his way at Cardiff. A couple of loan enquiries were made from other sides but these didn’t materialise into offers. This is therefore an important window for him and there will be many other players out there in the same situation, where they know that if they stay at their clubs then they won’t play any football between now and the end of the season. It’s therefore important to look at all options available, no matter what league, in order to get the player back playing football until the end of the season and then look for a new contract in the summer.

Warnock pays the price of success

I drove past Neil Warnock getting into his Aston Martin the day after the news that he had been sacked by QPR. I don’t know Neil that well but I know Mick Jones and I’m really disappointed for him. Never a nice situation to be in but I’m sure that as soon as a job becomes available Neil and his team will be one of the front runners.

Paying the price: Warnock left himself with a tall order by getting QPR promoted

Paying the price: Warnock left himself with a tall order by getting QPR promoted

From the owners point of view I can see them looking at the table with the money that they’ve spent, seeing Norwich, Swansea above them, and thinking that there was something wrong. I think the takeover happened a little late for Neil to really get the players in that he wanted and everything seemed a little rushed but he gave it a go.

I wonder sometimes, and I’m not saying that Neil would be this type of manager, but will it happen one day that a club gets promoted from the Championship with a manager and then sacks him because they feel that he’s not a Premier League manager I don’t think I would be afraid to do that. The Premier League is a different machine, a manager would need to adapt, be better tactically, have to handle perhaps losing more games than the previous season. Maybe a manager that has always managed at a top level would also struggle at a lower level.

We are looking forward to a busy week now. January hasn’t been as quiet as I thought it might be and we have plenty to be getting on with, at home and abroad. Until next week…