Legal dispute could stall Iheanacho transfer


IheanachoKelechi Iheanacho’s proposed summer move away from Manchester City could be stalled claim ESPN,  until a legal dispute with his former representatives is sorted out by the courts.

Iheanacho, now represented by Stellar Group, is involved in a lawsuit with his former representatives, U.S.-based First Eleven Management, over his image rights.

A source close to the player says a decision is expected in June. “Nothing can happen with regards to a transfer until this issue is resolved,”

Last December, Iheanacho asked a Pennsylvania court to dissolve his contract with First Eleven and all the parties involved, while also seeking punitive damages, attorneys’ fees and expenses.

Iheanacho filed suit against two area attorneys, alleging they received more compensation than agreed upon for his likeness and image.  According to a suit filed in Luzerne County Court:

Iheanacho was persuaded into signing over image rights to his name to attorneys Robert Zanicky and Raymond Hassay.

Iheanacho met Zanicky in early 2013, when he was sixteen, after Zanicky approached him following the 2013 African Under 17 Championships. An agreement was signed in late July 2013 by Zanicky and Iheanacho’s father. The contract, which was signed for $1,000, enabled Zanicky, Hassay and their combined venture, First Eleven Management, in Wilkes-Barre, image rights to Iheanacho.

When Iheanacho turned eighteen, Zanicky convinced the striker to sign another contract that turned over 100 percent of his image rights to RHRZ LLC and Team Kelechi LLC, based in Pittston.

“The assignment governs all of Kelechi’s image rights, defined to include all legal and beneficial rights and goodwill stemming from Kelechi’s name, nickname, initials, autograph, caricature, reputation and endorsements,” the lawsuit states. It also prohibited Iheanacho from signing with another party for the use of his image or likeness.

First Eleven, acting as Team Kelechi’s “exclusive agent” was able to market, sell or licenses Kelechi’s image. Images licensed out garnered First Eleven 20 percent of the gross revenue. The duo also would receive 50 percent compensation from RHRZ LLC.

At the time their first contact was agreed upon, Iheanacho said, he was not aware of Zanicky’s suspension from the practice of law after pleading no contest to two counts of corruption of minors. According to Times Leader records, Zanicky, who was president of the United Soccer Training Academy, was charged in 2011 with corrupting the morals of two girls, who were 16 and 17 at the time.

Iheanacho is asking the courts to dissolve the contract between First Eleven LLC, RHRZ LLC, Hassay, Zanicky and Iheanacho. He also is seeking punitive damages and attorneys fees and expenses.

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  • West Ham Fan No 32 says:

    These Lawyers sound like wonderful people, hopefully he can get it resolved.

  • kevin says:

    Is it all worth it ?? . We seem to be pinning our hopes on a transfer that is dodgy to say the least . Man City don’t want him , untill they do want him , agents in the mix and law suits .
    Is he the player we need ?? , No way imo . Why should he be ok for West Ham but , not ok for City ?.
    Wouldn’t touch him with a barge pole …. hope it all collapses . Surely we’re not that desperate to sign a player that was left on the bench by City .
    Personally , i don’t see any future in signing a reject , no matter how good he is claimed to be by those who are only interested in making a Monkey out of West Ham United . It’s about time we got serious and forget silly signings . It’s not as if he is a player the world is screaming about . If Desperation is our way forward with Ambition in mind , then , Ambition needs to be Redifined. We don’t need to sign a player from a club with a buy out clause .
    Should be telling City to do one ., and look elsewhere . Getting steamrollered is a thing we should avoid like the plague .

  • kevin says:

    Hopefully, we have more irons in the fire . If not , then , it’s all going to be more of the same.
    Another summer of discontent and poor signings . Zabaleta is a great requisition but , we need more than that . We don’t need ” on the beach ” players . ….
    We only need to get Carroll , Sakho , Antonio , Kouaty , Ogbonna , Creswell fit for next season . We have some very good youngsters waiting in the wings for Thier chance .
    Plus , with , Valencia back in the fold we should be strong enough .
    It’s down to Bilic to get it sorted . It’s not as if we have a weak Squad . As I said in a previous post , the two teams to look out for should be West Ham United & Newcastle .
    In my opinion , a great sighning , would be Martial . Dynamic and full of beans . No contract complications and a player that knows the Premiership .

  • doc66 says:

    Kevin you need a serious reality check and to do some background work on pretty much most of what you have mentioned above. If you’re gonna just come on here and moan then we can all do without it. There’s plenty of that going on on other sites.
    You’re the first person i have come across who doesn’t think Iheanacho would be a good acquisition. Even the Citeh fans don’t want him to leave. The reason he’s on the bench is because he can’t force himself past Aguero and Jesus. 2 top class strikers who most other strikers in the prem would find hard forcing their way past!!
    Honestly, a little bit of thought and optimism would be much more productive.

    • Robbie says:

      You are wrong.I have read three different fans on here say he isnt worth buying.Thank god we dont have them trying to sign players.I have a handful of mates who are City.Not one of them has a bad word to say about the kid and dont want him to go.
      Then you come on here and the billy big spuds are saying he aint worth getting.Bunch of planks.

  • master says:

    kevin, deluded son.

  • Robbie says:

    Every site needs a drama queen who clearly aint got a scooby what their own about.Kevin is this sites it seems.A close runner up johnham who is so knowledgeable he claims Ihaenacho is AWFUL!!!

  • LJ says:

    “Why should he be ok for West Ham but , not ok for City ?.” City are one of the richest and biggest clubs in the UK (finished 3rd). We finished 11th and have had striker issues all season.

    Iheanacho goal to min ration is fantastic. He is quick, young and actuall a target who MAYBE interested in joining us (rather than spending 2/3 months on trying to sign lacazette again).

    He is a very good striker, with lots of potential. Young. Hungry Goalscorer who may actually be interested in signing for us (unlike half of the targets who we go for just to sound good in the papers). .

    How can anyone moan about trying to sign him for 20mil! Fantastic signing in my opinion.

    • LJ says:

      Oh and Martial would be a fantastic signing i 100% agree on that – would also cost 50/60 million (Do you think we will pay that? I dont) – Its like saying Messi would be a fantastic signing. He would be but we have no chance unfortunately.

  • Stan The Man says:

    Come on Kevin old boy theres no need to get in a flap over what is nothing more than the media spouting off.I hope you didnt flap as much when it was claimed there was a red double decker bus on the moon by a very reputable paper years ago lol
    My pennys worth on him is that he will be a smashing signing and i havnt got a clue why a single one of our fans can say he is awful or not worth £20m or unproven.Oh well we all have different opinions even if i do find some peculiar lol

  • kc.NAIJA says:

    kelechi is quality..used to watch him play way back when he was still 12 thereabout. am from Owerri imostate Nigeria..same state as kelechi..I have tons of pics of us from way back..The lad oozes quality..CITY ARE GONNA REGRET LETTING HIM GO..when they finally realise that ALL HE NEEDED WAS GAME TIME..which unfortunately, they couldn’t guarantee him..the beautiful thing about KC is that he is much more brutal as a supporting striker…anyways am a newbie here, & hope am gonna cherish the journey

    • Stan The Man says:

      Kc i dont know a hammers fan who i know that doesnt hope we get him.Its only a couple on our blogs i have seen who have questioned him.I would be delighted to get him.On the other side of the fence i have spoken to my city friends who think Guardiola is bonkers to get rid of him but accept he will have limited game time at city so can understand if the kid himself does move on.

      • West Ham Fan No 32 says:

        Not sure if I am one that questioned him or not Stan, I said I wasn’t that excited by the rumours, the kid has potential thats for sure but at this stage thats all it is, at 24m if the figures are true its a big punt and despite what the papers say I am fairly sure he will still be at City next season, hence my remarks about not getting too excited. This is the silly season, nigerian websites making claims of medicals and fees agreed etc, ESPN claiming agents are blocking the way, the chairmen saying city are refusing to give them a price, I am more inclined to believe the Chairmen and if City won’t give them a price its because they are trying to start a bidding war or they have no interest in selling him, my guess is the latter, he is useful to Guardiola and probably cheap at that. When City say they have accepted a bid I will be a bit more excited 🙂

  • kc.NAIJA says:

    nacho on target again today for Nigeria vs Togo..we won 3 to nil…with Ahmed musa grabbing a brace and Alex iwobi providing wo beautiful and sublime assists.. hammers you need to act quickly because pep IS having a rethink and is considering keeping him as the clubs third choice striker.. though I doubt he would accept that..right now its all about game time and heb needs it ASAP

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