Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Tevez Affair the sequel part IX

The Tevez affair continues to drag on, as reported on the BBC. FIFA were supposed to rule on the ownership of the ugliest man in Football, but for whatever reason they have suggested that it be taken to the Court of Sports Arbitration. If you don't know who this body are a brief description is:-

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) is an institution independent of any sports organization which provides for services in order to facilitate the settlement of sports-related disputes through arbitration or mediation by means of procedural rules adapted to the specific needs of the sports world. The CAS was created in 1984 and is placed under the administrative and financial authority of the International Council of Arbitration for Sport (ICAS). The CAS has nearly 300 arbitrators from 87 countries, chosen for their specialist knowledge of arbitration and sports law. Around 200 cases are registered by the CAS every year.

The dispute, in case anyone is interested, or confused, is who owns the rights economically for Tevez - West Ham or Kia Joorabchian. Man Utd have a wad of cash that they want to give to one of these two parties, so that they can parade the ugly forward line of Shrek and General Thade, but nobody knows who is the rightful recipient of the money. West Ham received the player along with his colleague at the beginning of last season for nothing from Kia's company, who had the economic rights to Tevez. Correctly, West Ham had to register him, for him to play for them in the Prem. However, in January, it was realised that if Kia's lot had the registration then West Ham were in breach of the rules of the Prem and there would have been no doubt that it would have led to a points deduction against West Ham.

So under the direction of the League, West Ham said to Kia, thanks for the player, a world class Argentinian, we are keeping him and you will get nothing if we sell him on.

So West Ham have a £25 - 40 million player who they got for nothing and the reason for this is that they decided that the contract they signed with Kia (under previous management) could not be enforced. Having said that, it has not been proved that it is unenforceable.

In effect what has happened is as if we went to a car dealer, bought a car with a loan and said to the loan company that you had decided to tear up the agreement with them and keep the car.

If Kia is right and he does own the player then West Ham were in breach of Prem regs at the end of the season and should have not played him in the run in. The form he showed during that period directly resulted in West Ham staying up. Having said that, most West Ham fans will tell you that he really did not do a lot and most Sheff U fans will say that he was the only player on the field. The truth is some where in between.

What is clear to me is that there continues to be total confusion amongst the authorities about Tevez's ownership and as a result the verdicts that have been handed down regarding West Hams guilt or lack of it seem dodgy to say the least. If it had been so simple, why have the FA and FIFA been unable to rule on this?

If it is not simple then the player should not have been allowed to participate in the final games of the season, let alone games from January, when the problem was first identified.

From a Charlton perspective it is not relevant, we beat West Spam 4-0 at home with Tevez in the side and through our own ineptitude were relegated. But if I were a Sheff U fan then the more we hear the more we realise that this whole episode stinks and the longer it goes on the more it stinks. If Kia wins in arbitration or the High Court, does it then mean that the League will act against West Ham continuing to play a player, who through the rules was inelligble or will they hold their hands up and declare that none of it was West Hams fault and let them off?

Alternatively, if West Ham are found to be acting correctly and have acquired a player of Tevez's ability for £0, what kind of punishment will a £5m fine have been, when they are receiving £25 m plus?

The Footballing authorities come out of this smelling badly, they have been incompetent and possibly even biased in their adjudications on this matter. Hopefully they will now be able, after the verdict, to start putting in processes, procedures and regulations to ensure in future there is total clarity in all actions, but then pigs may fly too.

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