‘Tottenham face uphill struggle’

LEADING sports lawyers believe Tottenham would find it difficult to succeed in overturning the OPLC’s decision with a judicial review. Here is a selection of their comments on the latest development in the row.

Robert Campbell, head of litigation, Faegre and Benson: “Judicial review is probably the only legal route available to Tottenham so to that extent I’m not particularly surprised. Judicial reviews in these circumstances are notoriously difficult to succeed. They require the party to convince the administrative court that the public body has exercised its discretion in a way that is irrational. This decision was carried out in the full glare of public scrutiny. I think they face an uphill struggle.”

Andrew Nixon, associate, Thomas Eggar: “I’m very surprised. I think Tottenham’s prospects are slim. Their strongest argument will be that the OPLC ignored a number of considerations when coming to the decision. I’d be amazed if the OPLC have not been very very careful about how they’ve gone about this to make sure it’s water-tight, because they must have known very early on there was a chance their decision would be reviewed.”

Harry Karaolou, senior associate, Lawrence Graham: “It’s taken them approximately two months so it’s a surprise that they have waited so long, but it’s a surprise they are doing it at all. I’d expect them to argue that the decision was irrational, and would therefore have to show that the OPLC took into account irrelevant matters or failed to take into account relevant matters. I think it’s unlikely to get as far as judicial review, and I think it would be unlikely to succeed. ”