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Last Updated: Friday, 30 March 2007, 06:59 GMT 07:59 UK
West Ham to avoid big points loss
Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano
Mascherano (right) has since left West Ham to join Liverpool
West Ham should avoid a hefty points deduction from the Premier League over the signings of Javier Mascherano and Carlos Tevez, BBC Sport understands.

The Premier League is probing the signings from Brazilian side Corinthians in August 2006.

BBC Five Live's Mike Sewell said: "Any possible punishment will be proportionate. It will be a maximum of three points and a fine.

"It may be a six-figure fine. But the hearing isn't until the end of April."

Tevez and Mascherano's registration with third party Media Sports Investment could have broken Premier League regulations.

West Ham, who are eight points adrift of safety at the foot of the Premiership, denied any wrongdoing.

Sewell added: "You can dismiss any notion that West Ham will be hit with a large deduction of points.

606: DEBATE
AT

"Any points deduction may not even be necessary by the time the hearing takes place because by then the club could already be relegated."

The double signing of Argentina internationals Macherano and Tevez came as a surprise last summer, but the moves have been shrouded in mystery over who owns the players.

The Football Association said earlier this month it will investigate allegations of financial impropriety over Mascherano's signing last year.

The News of the World claimed to have documents detailing a 339,000 payment in relation to the deal, which was not disclosed, as required, to the FA.

An FA spokesman said: "We have received documents and will be investigating."

A Hammers spokesman told the News of the World: "All documents relating to the Mascherano and Tevez transfers have now been submitted to the Premier League to assist with their ongoing inquiry.

"That includes the so-called third party agreements and all payments relating to them, which were passed on by the club's new owners in January."

Mascherano was given special dispensation to join Liverpool last month but Tevez remains at Upton Park - where he is leading the club's push to survive relegation.

SEE ALSO
Blackburn 1-2 West Ham
17 Mar 07 |  Premiership
West Ham contest signings charge
16 Mar 07 |  West Ham Utd
FA opts to wait on Tevez decision
07 Feb 07 |  Internationals
Hammers charged by Premier League
02 Mar 07 |  West Ham Utd
Mascherano free to join Liverpool
20 Feb 07 |  Liverpool
West Ham sign Tevez & Mascherano
31 Aug 06 |  West Ham Utd


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