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The agent's role
Around the Academy:

Wayne Bridge is one of Jonathan's clients
Wayne Bridge moved to Chelsea this summer
Football agent Jonathan Barnett works with some of the biggest names in the English game.

The Academy caught up with Jonathan to share his transfer expertise.

What is an agent's role and how do you help players on a day-to-day basis?

We look after every aspect of their careers - from their marketing to the personal side. The most important thing for us is that footballers can just concentrate on playing.

At what stage in a transfer does the agent get involved?

We step in once a fee has been agreed between the two clubs.

At this stage I'll get a phone call from either the manager of the selling club or the manager of the buying club telling me that my player has been given permission to talk.

What happens when a player discusses personal terms?

Transfers aren't just about cash

As the agent, I would take a complete role in this. I'll sit down with whoever is in charge of the negotiations for the buying club and discuss terms.

I'll also discuss with my player whether it's the right club for him to go to.

It's not always just about money - it's also about the progression of the player and whether or not it's right for him to go there.

Did Wayne Bridge's transfer (from Southampton to Chelsea) go smoothly?

As far as Chelsea were concerned, yes. I wasn't involved in the negotiations at this point, but I know Southampton weren't happy to let him go.

In the end they were reasonable enough to see that it was a good deal for them and a good deal for the boy - a good chance for him.

What type of things would hold up a transfer?

Wayne Bridge
Wayne hopes to be an England star

Personal terms are the big thing.

For example, are they saying the player will be the number one choice in his position?

For somebody like Wayne that's very important - he wouldn't want to go in as the understudy to anybody.

And then we had to discuss whether it was right for him at that particular time to go to a club like Chelsea. What's the length of the contract? Would it help his England career?

His whole lifestyle would have to change and these are all things that have to be discussed.

Is the player's medical just a formality?

One would hope so but that's not always the case.

Almost 99% of the time players have the medical records to hand and the clubs are pretty confident they'll pass, but it is a very stringent thing.

Transfer lowdown
The manager's role
Meet the agent

Barnett's boys
Titus Bramble (Newcastle United)
Wayne Bridge (Chelsea)
Ashley Cole (Arsenal)
Carlton Cole (Chelsea)
Peter Crouch (Aston Villa)
Kieron Dyer (Newcastle)
Anthony Gardner (Tottenham)
Andy Griffin (Newcastle)
John Hartson (Celtic)
Jody Morris (Leeds)
Richard Wright (Everton)

:: Stellar Group

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