One of Oliver Kay’s alleged sources has emerged to stand by his claims about the Qatari Dream Football League:

Rob Beal is apparently the Head of Football Media Management European Sports Media group in Paris. I have no idea what that is except it has 29 employees. His job description on Viadeo (like LinkedIn) includes mention of “…interests and colleagues in the Middle East. I deal daily with the world major media groups.”

For the record, this is all very confusing. But the pat assumption that the public may not be buying this is somehow a reflection on Oliver Kay is a tad patronizing. It’s certainly possible the story is correct, and it’s certainly possible Kay was as thorough as he could possibly be and was still misled for reasons as yet unknown. Until this story is confirmed, we can’t know one way or the other. Some papers are refusing to touch it, but the wagons continue to circle on Twitter, and Kay is on the record vigourously denying he was careless in any way in his reportage.

Thanks to Ursos Arctos for sending this my way…

MAJOR UPDATE: So this is kind of a big deal. I’ve done some web investigating and it seems that this Rob Beal person may have a bit of am, erm, history. I typed in his name and ‘Sheffield Wednesday’ auto attached on google. So I went back to the above Rob Beal’s Viadeo page and under hobbies and—yep—it includes Sheffield Wednesday.

His name popped up on a comment on 200% post of all things. Apparently he was involved with Sheffield Wednesday with something called Club 9. I googled his name and Sheffield and <> came up after a little digging, with this snippet:

We can confirm that the Rob Beal of Global Security is our Rob Beal and that he has never worked in security.

Kind regrads


So I googled Rob Beal and Global Security and found this and this.

If you read the links, his company purports to be operating out of Paris, just like this Beal’s supposed company ESM, and it’s been accused of various forms of alleged fraud. Moreover, another forum link puts the actual location of this supposedly Parisian security firm in…Sheffield. Hmmmmm.

My first instinct was to assume Rob Beal was just making up stuff on Twitter about his links to Oliver Kay. But then I checked his ‘followers’ list. And Oliver Kay, Dan Roan, and other premier journalists are on it. So…what the hell is going on here?

UPDATE #2: Since publishing this post, I’ve been inundated with information offered about Rob Beal, none of it very flattering. He has approached at least one other news organizations with story information before. He was referred to as one journalist as a “scammer.” He has been involved in several attempts to purchase clubs (I’m still waiting on some more information on this front).

And the website Ursos lists below is NOT the same organization Beal purports to be a part of. It has been repeatedly confirmed to me Beal is based in Sheffield. We shouldn’t jump to conclusions, but this is a man with a history of attempting to work with journalists to share information.

Comments (35)

  1. Is this World Football’s Manti Te’o story? Should I pop some popcorn here?

  2. ESM is real, and has been around for some time as a type of umbrella group for European football magazines (including ones you would know like kicker, Marca and World Soccer). They own the rights to the European Golden Shoe (the club award, not the one for the Euros).

    Their website is here:

    The bigger question is whether Beal has any real connection with them, particularly in light of the fact that the member magazines don’t appear to be carrying this story.

  3. Rob Beal is a sad little con artist who has no actual real job or “company” (or colleagues for that matter). Known to the police for years as such (he starts idle threats of violence when rumbled) he spends his days in the pub trawling the Internet for stories (to be fair he puts a lot of effort into his chosen path of con artist). Just hope The Times haven’t fallen for his lies as many many others have.

  4. To further what Walter said, the DFL story is from the same stable as the Arsenal for 1.5bn story a few weeks ago.

    Placed in the media by someone with good journalist connections but who is actually a complete fraud and frankly wasting their time as well as everyone elses.

    It is sad to see the media being mocked like this and to see the waste of good column inches that could be covering genuine issues.

  5. What I don’t understand about the actual story is why would that french comedy news(I assume is like the onion…) post this if there was legitimate word that this may be a thing?

  6. When was Dan Roan “a premier journalist”? I thought conman Peter Hargitay was his major source. Many have speculated today that “Beal” is actually Hargitay. Same vicious rage when rumbled.

  7. Beal is very definitely Beal. Of the address mentioned in the blog. How many other people he poses as is anyone’s guess.

  8. The picture on his twitter feed above is genuine

  9. tinman, Cahiers de Football is more like When Saturday Comes than the Onion. Parody is only a relatively small part of what they do.

  10. Including the “logo” that the Times ran with Kay’s story.

  11. The core photo of which can be traced back to the Qatar World Cup Bid Committee, as it so happens.

  12. I’m baffled by the arguments of the colleagues defending Oliver Kay. The most ridiculous “appeal to authority” fallacy, mentioning his reputation and the likes of “if you really know him, you know he didn’t make that up”, against the FACTS. I’m not a journalist and I know they usually protect each other, but so far there’s a rather shady source being protected here. And they also refuse to prove or clarify anything, which is quite bizarre, instead resorting to ” anyone who doubts @OliverKayTimes will look foolish” – how’s that for “looking foolish”?

    • All of these guys have made up stories in their career or written stories based on shaky sources, so it’s logical they back each other. They are aware this could have happened/could happen to them too one day. On Twitter, the public sucking up between journalists is simply sad.

    • I guess they’re trying to say that ”he’s not that kind of player” (ahem)

  13. How does Club 9 potentially bidding for Rangers relate?

  14. David bright seems to have a good awareness of this keyboard warrior.

    I think a visit from Curtis Woodhouse would stem his constant drivel

  15. Interesting to see that Rob Beal has deleted yesterday’s “From Doha” quote that seemed to back up the story after he was challenged by the Guardian

  16. Alright, i’ll admit i’m impressed Richie.

  17. Ah deep throat, You’ll find that @robbealparis tends to delete a lot of tweets, especially the ones he tweets when he’s pissed up, and that his job role changes on a daily basis.
    Beware though, he gets quite upset sometimes and types really really hard on the keys. That’s right before he yells something about his solicitors coming to get you.

    And we all know about the bad spelling and horrendous grammar.

    I’m sure my pet ferret could spell better than he does!

    Smiley face

  18. Interesting news today from a journalist friend of mine who has spoken to Beal today, Beal is now saying he has ‘resigned’ from his company in Paris (he lives in Sheffield). He also said he had emailed the league logo to the Times (which appeared first on the spoof CdH story) but that it was “the wrong one” by mistake. Apparentally man U, Arsenal and Liverpool all telling press they have never been contacted about the Qatar league.

  19. Guys, just a heads up to be very careful about what you say in the comments section here. We’re not liable for it.

  20. Hi Richard, Feel free to delete my posts if you like. I have no truck with RB any more. If you’re getting pressure, get rid of them.

  21. I too dont mind you deleting my comments. Although they are factually correct I simply wanted anyone who is about to consider associating themselves with this full time fruit cake to understand what the rest of us have already experienced….

  22. feel free to delete mine too. but ive said it before and ill say it again – i would stand up in a court of law and prove evverything ive said about this man.

  23. Ricardo, by the sounds of things you have deleted posts that are true…
    If he wants to take things further then he will be admitting to actually doing them, so I don’t see any problem with what people are posting.

    Sound like this ‘so called’ business man has stood on a few toes!

    David brights masterpiece has gone, apparently all true too!

    Can I ask for a repost of his previous statement

  24. I have had experiences with Rob Beal and can concur with Walter above. He is unemployed and lives in Sheffield. He spends the majority of his time either on his computer at his parents house where he has lived since birth, or in the pub at the bottom of several pints of lager.

    1) Before this current ‘fake company’ Beal claimed to be working for 10 media Management supposed to be based out of Paris. This is a lie as they dont exist

    2) He has claimed to have worked with bands such as Take That. Lie, they have never dealt with him and do not know who he is. I have spoken to their manager at several social events and raised this con mans name.

    2) For 18 months the 10 Media website said coming soon and had no contact details…. 18 months! Finally when questioned he pulled it down and coincidently moved jobs to his current fake company called Football Media management fraudulent activity and Fake existence or something similar.

    3) The address finally associated with 10 Media management was actually a cafe in Paris

    4) He is linked to an American company called Club 9 sports who at one time were interested in buying Sheffield Wednesday. He contacted Club 9 and said he works in this field and for free will be their representative. He then told SWFC he was their man and opened up talks without seeking any go ahead from Club 9. I spoke with their CEO and he was shocked to learn of this. SWFC thought they were in advanced talks with Club. Needless to say the deal broke down.

    5) He has been lying to the Guardian news paper about sponsoring their french football column. He let them launch their column with the promise of several thousands of pounds worth of sponsorship heading their way. This money never appeared and the people at the Guardian were put in a very awkward position.

    6) There are and have been in excess of over 10 police investigations running against Rob Beal. THIS MAN IS NOT TO BE TRUSTED He gains credibility from liking himself to one person within an industry and then using that weak link to gain the next one. This is a very calculated individual who has been doing this since his teens. Ignore all his waffle and stay clear of his bizarre little world.

  25. Stumbled across this about Robbie B.

    It’s all his tweets for 2012/2011

    He was a busy man, had meetings with Nestlé, Fox Sports…….

    And apparently sorted The Guardian, and France2 are on board, whatever that means.

    I would say its a good read, he has clearly fallen out with some people on here, and loves the word ‘idiots’

  26. If someone else did a little search like you did then they would have know who rob beal is ? Many journalist follow him and none of them did a little search about him ?! Crazy, that’s journalism ?

  27. I concur with what Walter Mitty has indicated . Rob beal indeed hails from Sheffield , spreads stories about his parents being terminally ill ( my guess is to gain sympathy ) , spends his days sitting in various pubs getting drunk . I know him personally and considered him a friend – though no longer , on account of fraudulent of cash .
    I also know people who he’s promised contracts of work to and then asked for money up front to then keep the money when asked to return it .

    He’s a con man ! End of !!

    I hope he gets what’s coming to him . Oh and if you dare to question is motives he threatens solicitors and restraining orders !

    He’s a horrible individual !!

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