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Paul Gilroy KC

Paul Gilroy KC

Silk: 2006 | Call: 1985

King's Counsel

"He is a leading light in football cases."

(Chambers and Partners 2018)

Paul Gilroy KC

"He is a leading light in football cases."

(Chambers and Partners 2018)


Paul Gilroy KC’s reputation is principally based on his employment practice. He has for some years been recognised by Chambers & Partners, The Legal 500, and Legal Experts as a leader in this field. Paul has been recognised as a leading silk within the Employment Northern Circuit.

“Paul Gilroy KC is fantastic at speaking with the judge. He is smart and strategic, and has a very calm and cool manner.” (Chambers & Partners 2023)

“Paul Gilroy KC is the go-to barrister for football manager disputes.” (Chambers & Partners 2023)

“He is a very good advocate and good at cross-examining” (Chambers & Partners 2023)

“Paul Gilroy KC is easy to deal with and is switched-on. He is a brilliant cross-examiner” (Chambers & Partners 2023)

“He is astute, user-friendly and a fantastic cross-examiner.” (Chambers & Partners 2022 (Sport))

The leading name in acting for individuals in football whether they are managers, executives, backroom staff or players.” (Legal 500 2022 (Sport))

“The leading barrister on the employment side of sports law, particularly acting for managers and coaches; well connected to key individuals.” (Legal 500 2018 (Sport))

“He is very hands on, approachable, knows the sector very well, and he is combative when you require him to be.”
(Chambers and Partners 2018 (Sport))

“He is a leading light in football cases.”
(Chambers and Partners 2018)

“He knows and is instructed by everyone in football.”
(Legal 500 2017)

“Paul has a very robust and persuasive style.”
(Chambers and Partners 2017)

“Focuses on employment law and is frequently instructed on complex or high level work at the Employment Tribunal, Employment Appeal Tribunal and High Court, such as whistleblowing, discrimination, class actions and executive matters.”
(Chambers and Partners 2016)

“A noted employment specialist who is frequently instructed in employment disputes in the sports sector. He is a favourite for high-profile footballers and managers who are facing difficulties with their clubs. ‘He is very tenacious and personable and is renowned for getting a fantastic deal for managers.’ ‘He is an outstanding trial lawyer.’”
(Chambers and Partners 2016)

“He is an excellent advocate who has the gravitas to deal with complex tribunals. He is very thorough and focused.”
(Chambers and Partners 2015)

In terms of employment law, Paul was shortlisted by Legal 500 as “ Employment Silk of the Year 2022 ”.

Paul Gilroy has over three decades of experience of employment-related litigation at all levels. He has particular expertise in substantive High Court actions and proceedings for injunctive relief (including strike action injunctions) and high value/multi-party employment tribunal work.

He also conducts investigations into employment law-related matters.

He has a particular interest in sports-related litigation and regulatory matters, both generally and in sport in particular.

He has advised and acted for a stellar list of football clients, including Roy Hodgson, Martin O’Neill, Gianfranco Zola, Sir Alex Ferguson, Harry Redknapp, and David Moyes, amongst others.

Most appearances as Counsel before the FA Premier League Managers Arbitration Tribunal (7).

He is a specialist member of the FA’s Judicial Panel and the FA Judicial Appeal Board.

He has been instructed in high profile public inquiries (Ashworth Hospital and Harold Shipman), and has wide-ranging experience in the field of professional discipline, both acting in and conducting disciplinary hearings for Universities and sports bodies and in the NHS.

He contributes to professional publications, has annotated employment legislation for Current Law Statutes, has been engaged by Sweet & Maxwell to assist in editing the Encyclopaedia on Employment Law, and is a frequent speaker on employment law topics to professional and other audiences.

Notable recent work

  • Harrod and ors. v Chief Constable of West Midlands Police and ors. [2017] EWCA 191 (Court of Appeal). Indirect age discrimination and justification.
  • BAE Systems v Konczak [2017] EWCA 1188 (Court of Appeal). Divisibility of psychiatric harm.
  • Greater Manchester Police v Bailey [2017] EWCA Civ 425 (Court of Appeal). Race Discrimination.
  • Re: Mr X (2016-2018) Independent investigation on behalf of an NHS Trust into whistleblowing complaints made by a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon.
  • Carl Frampton v Barry McGuigan (2017-2018). High Court litigation and Arbitration before the British Boxing Board of Control.
  • Re: Ms Z (2018) Independent investigation on behalf of British Parasnowsport and UK Sport into complaints of bullying and harassment made by a para athlete.
  • Middlesbrough FC v Garry Monk (2018). FA Rule K Arbitration.
  • Various v Rugby Football League and Super League (Europe) (2018).Challenges to salary cap and other restrictions on professional rugby league players.
  • Author of Chapter on Football Managers’ Contracts in ‘Football and the Law’ (Bloomsbury – published May 2018 (

High Court Employment & Commercial

Statutory Employment




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