Mark Hovell

Position: Partner
Phone: +(44)(0)161 234 8810
Offices:Manchester

What can I do for you?

I represent players’ associations, individual sportspeople, clubs and (reputable!) agents on a wide range of sports law matters including regulatory issues and contractual matters, image rights and marketability, as well as on personal matters. I’m an insolvency practitioner and have helped restructure many professional sports clubs, as well as helping individuals with financial problems. I also specialise in international sports arbitration.

Supporting my clients’ ambitions

Over the last 20 years, I have helped thousands of sportspeople with their sporting contracts, image rights and endorsement work. Whether it’s a Premier League contract, a book deal, setting up a charitable foundation, having your wedding covered in “Hello” or even a contract for “Dancing on Ice” – I’ve helped out!

Utilising my experience gained as an arbitrator at the Court of Arbitration for Sport, I have helped a number of clubs in bringing foreign talent into the UK – advising on peculiarities of training compensation or Article 17, breach of contract risks.

In difficult times, be it due to financial problems, doping or other regulatory offences, I offer advice and representation.

I also look to solve problems for parties through mediation or arbitration, being on the Chairpersons list at Sport Resolutions, as well as a long standing CAS arbitrator.

What do others say?

Mark Hovell is “one of the best arbitrators” in sports, noted for his technical skills and his “admirable work ethic”. Sources say: “Mark is a gifted think-tank with an ability to articulate issues in a clear and concise manner.”

"Mark Hovell has particular strength in sports-related insolvencies, and has been involved in some 50 football club insolvencies/restructurings." Legal 500, 2011

"Mark Hovell is noted for his sports sector expertise, recently advising the Professional Footballers’ Association and its members." Legal 500, 2012

One of the most common things we hear from clients is that we provide practical and straightforward advice with a personal and engaging approach.

We advise on a wide range of legal, commercial and regulatory matters in sport and have been recognised as industry leaders in players’ rights issues (successfully representing footballers in the leading defamation, doping, and discrimination cases), arbitration and litigation (hundreds of cases before dispute resolution bodies, including employment tribunals, The FA, FIFA, and the Court of Arbitration for Sport), insolvency and restructuring (having on over 60 of these matters for sporting clients), advising foreign athletes and clubs (members of our team are fluent in several languages and admitted to practice in a number of international jurisdictions), and our work in women’s sport (advising England women’s football and netball teams, the FA WSL players, and several individual athletes).

Legal 500 describes our sports law team as “first class in every respect.”

Chambers describes our sports law team as having “an outstanding offering in football.”

What else should you know?

As an arbitrator for CAS I have sat on over 70 international cases, including a number of Olympic selection cases in 2012 and was lucky enough to work in Delhi for the 2010 Commonwealth Games, as part of the CAS ad hoc committee. I regularly lecture on sports law and finance in the UK, USA, Spain and at other international conferences and universities.