FFA launch Heart probe into Kewell car deal

Football Federation Australia have confirmed they have launched an investigation into Socceroo legend Harry Kewell’s salary cap deal with Melbourne Heart in 2013/14.

Papers filed at the Federal Court claim Kewell joined Melbourne Heart following an extension of a $1m “Jeep brand ambassador” deal with Fiat Chrysler.

According to reports in Fairfax Press, in February 2013 the existing agreement is alleged to have been expanded if Kewell, 36, signed for Heart.

At the time, Kewell was hailed as being brought in under the salary cap on a rumoured $80,000 a year contract.

However under the updated terms of his deal with Fiat Chrysler, according to the reported contents of the documents, on top the of the current $1m he was receiving from Fiat Chrysler, he would also get his house rent paid up to $2,000 a week, school fees paid up to $75,000 a year and eight return business fare flights to the UK a year.

Shane Warne and Elizabeth Hurley were also Jeep Brand Ambassadors, according to the papers filed, but Fiat Chrysler say there was no brand ambassador programme in Australia.

The details have come to light in a legal action by the car giant against its former Australian boss Clyde Campbell.

They claim he misused $30m on a lavish lifestyle for him and his business colleagues.

The documents filed also claim Kewell made a series of personal payments into Campbell’s bank account during 2013 and 2014, totalling $13,975.

There is no suggestion of any wrongdoing by Kewell. He played 16 games for Heart and scored two goals during his year with the club before retiring at the end of the season.

Today the FFA confirmed they had begun a probe into the issue.

It’s understood, they became aware of the matter when details began to emerge in the court case.

They have now asked Melbourne City to hand over everything they have in relation to Kewell and his time at the club.

A spokesman said: “Our enquiries are continuing.”