The Professional Footballers' Association says Tim Howard's claim that Brad Friedel submitted a letter trying to block him from getting a UK work permit in 2003 is false. The PFA handles work permit appeals, which Howard used to eventually get his appeal, and Chief Executive Gordon Taylor released a statement confirming that the PFA never got anything from Friedel.
With regard to the appeal by Manchester United on behalf of Tim Howard, which was successful, we have been asked to confirm that the PFA did not receive any correspondence from Brad Friedel in opposition of Tim Howard's work permit application
In an excerpt from Howard's upcoming book, the goalkeeper said that when Manchester United bought him and he had to appeal for a work permit, he and the club reached out to other Americans in the Premier League for character references. John Harkes and Kasey Keller wrote to the PFA on behalf of Howard, but Howard said Manchester United told him Friedel refused to. Later on, he says he learned that Friedel actually wrote a letter campaigning against him and that Friedel would eventually explain it as a matter of principle because it was tough for Friedel to get a work permit years earlier.
When reached for comment after the excerpt came out, Friedel denied Howard's claim. Now he has the PFA backing him too.