Costly details emerge in Leyton Orient’s High Court case with former sporting director Mauro Milanese

PUBLISHED: 16:30 01 June 2016

Mauro Milanese on the touchline when he was Leyton Orient caretaker manager (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Mauro Milanese on the touchline when he was Leyton Orient caretaker manager (pic: Simon O'Connor).

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It was confirmed last week that former Italy international Andrea Dossena earned £7,677 a week while at Brisbane Road

Andrea Dossena in action for Leyton Orient during the 2014/15 campaign (pic: Simon O'Connor).Andrea Dossena in action for Leyton Orient during the 2014/15 campaign (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Leyton Orient’s former sporting director Mauro Milanese lost his £100,000 wrongful dismissal claim in the High Courts last week.

The 44-year-old arrived at Brisbane Road as part of Francesco Becchetti’s takeover of the club in the summer of 2014 and was immediately appointed as the sporting director.

He was given the managerial duties on October 26, but reverted back to his former role on December 8 after the appointment of Fabio Liverani.

Milanese left the O’s on January 26, 2015 following claims of serious misconduct and Mrs Justice Whipple upheld the club’s dismissal ruling at the High Court last Thursday.

Six grounds were given for the sacking of the Italian, but only one was upheld.

It related to his handling of an agreement involving an academy player, whose name was not disclosed to the court. Milanese’s involvement was ruled by the judge as a “very serious breach of the implied term of mutual trust and confidence and constituted gross misconduct.”

He is entitled to £8,300 worth of damages from the club for accrued salary and expenses, but was ordered to pay £100,000 court costs.

The full judgement was later put online and revealed some startling facts about some of the salaries Orient players received during the 2014/15 campaign, which resulted in relegation to League Two.

Shane Lowry signed a two-year deal with the O’s on July 23, 2014 and was earning £3,800-a-week during the 2014/15 season, before his salary was set to rise to £4,050 for the 2015/16 campaign.

Milanese was the main Orient representative involved in the transfer and his part in the deal explains why the club were so keen to let Lowry leave in the summer of 2015.

Then boss Ian Hendon revealed Lowry had asked for a transfer, but if he had remained with the east Londoners he would have been earning over £4,000-a-week despite being in League Two.

Another intriguing piece of information from the documents released online was the salary of Andrea Dossena.

The Italian joined Orient on November 6 and having played for Liverpool and Sunderland in the Premier League appeared a major coup for the club.

But he went on to make just 15 appearances, scored only one goal and during his time with the club was earning £7,667 per week.

Milanese agreed an agent’s fee of £25,730 in this deal and during Darius Henderson’s transfer also sanctioned the agent’s fee would be £46,800.

The former sporting director lost his £100,000 wrongful dismissal claim down to his handling of the agreement involving an academy player, however, and not due to his role in the transfers of Lowry, Dossena and Henderson.

Orient had asked for Milanese to repay all of his salary and benefits during his employment, but the judge ruled “the claimant worked for the defendant for several months, with many aspects of his performance not being subjected to any criticism by the defendant.

“He is entitled to be paid for his time and to have his contractual benefits (accommodation, etc) paid for him.”

It was a messy end to a long court case between Milanese and Leyton Orient, but does show just why the 2014/15 season went wrong on a number of levels.

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