Leicester investigated over potential salary cap breach
NEWS: Leicester confirmed on Tuesday they were cooperating with a Premiership Rugby investigation into historical image rights payments after meeting officials over a potential breach of salary-cap regulations.
The league leaders responded to a report in the Times that salary cap director Andrew Rogers was understood to be looking into their association with a company called Worldwide Image Management (WIM).
“Leicester are aware of allegations made against the club regarding historic image rights payments,” a Tigers statement said.
“The club is cooperating with Premiership Rugby, who are looking into the historic matter, and has met with representatives from Premiership Rugby to discuss the claims.”
WIM was shut down in February but it is alleged that it previously made payments to Leicester players.
Rogers’ investigation will seek to clarify whether the payments constituted an increase in individual salaries, thereby breaking the salary cap.
It comes in the season that Saracens returned to the Premiership after a year spent in the second tier of English rugby as punishment for repeated salary cap breaches.
“The agreed policy is that we will never confirm nor deny if there is or is not an investigation under way,” a Premiership Rugby spokesman said.
Leicester have rebuilt under head coach Steve Borthwick and have won all of their matches this season, establishing an eight-point lead at the top of the Premiership.
Asked about a possible impact on performances, Borthwick told the BBC: “This will make us stronger than anyone thinks we can be. It’s another thing to try and detract from what we’re trying to do.”