The EFL has issued a statement about a Professional Football Compensation Committee (PGCC) tribunal, which met last week to decide on the compensation fee for Will Mannion.
Will left us to join Hull City in July 2016, without the clubs being able to agree a fee. The decision of the tribunal may be read in full on the EFL website but in summary AFC Wimbledon was awarded an initial fee of £100,000, plus further payments of up to £100,000 for appearances for Hull's first team, and up to £225,000 should be become an under 21 and full international in a competitive match.
The PGCC's statement explains the laid-down criteria on which the fee must be decided when a player has completed his time as a scholar and has chosen not to accept a professional contract. Although we sought a substantially higher compensation fee the AFC Wimbledon board considers that the Club received a very full hearing and, given the laid-down criteria by which the tribunal was bound to arrive at its decision, we accept that the fee is fair.
Will joined AFC Wimbledon at age 16, following the disappointment of being released from three other academies. It is a testament to the talent-spotting and coaching ability of Ashley Bayes, our first team goalkeeping coach, that within two years Will had been invited to join the England under 19 squad; he subsequently gained his first England under 19 cap only two months after joining Hull. Before the first offer was received from Hull City the Club had indicated that it was proposing to offer Will, then aged 17, a professional contract. Had such a contract been signed then any transfer fee would have been calculated on an entirely different basis.
We believe that Will has a fine career ahead of him and in the event that he is transferred to another club we will be entitled to 20 per cent of any profit Hull make on the deal. Will is currently recovering from a ligament injury but is reported to be likely to be ready to resume playing in July. We wish him every success in his future career.
Finally, we note Will is the third academy player in the last year to be recruited by another club. While we would always prefer to retain these boys and see them make their way into the first team, it is, nonetheless, evidence that the Club's investment in our Academy is bearing fruit.