West Ham ran out 2-1 winners over West Bromwich Albion on Tuesday night.
The optimism surrounding the Baggies' win over Wolves was quickly dashed as Jarrod Bowen opened the scoring on the brink of half time.
Matheus Pereira equalised six minutes after the interval, but Michail Antonio's well-taken strike ensured the Hammers took all three points.
All that might sound like a run-of-the-mill midweek Premier League fixture with few serious ramifications for the remainder of the season - except for West Brom's survival chances.
However, a report emerging from The Athletic suggests the controversy surrounding the fixture - and, in particular, the absence of Robert Snodgrass - isn't going away any time soon.
It's claimed the two clubs 'agreed' that the Scotsman would not play. Sam Allardyce said he couldn't pick the forward due to "an agreement between the clubs” when Snodgrass moved between them on January 8th.
“This game he wouldn’t be allowed to play," he is said to have told broadcasting rights holders. "If we needed to get the player — which we did — we had to agree to that.”
Even if he wasn't referring to a written deal, Premier League regulation I7 says that “no club shall enter into a contract which enables another party to that contract to acquire the ability materially to influence its policies or the performance of its teams in league matches”.
West Brom's statement added: “Sam Allardyce has confirmed Robert Snodgrass is unavailable to play in tonight’s game owing to the agreement reached with West Ham to sign the player.”
If they are found guilty, clubs can face a points deduction - though the Athletic note this is unlikely - or a fine.
The rule was introduced after Manchester United and Everton reached a similar 'gentleman's agreement' that the goalkeeper wouldn't play against the Red Devils.
West Ham and West Brom now face an anxious wait to hear the results of the Premier League investigation.News Now - Sport News