FIFA orders Cardiff to pay six million euros to Nantes

The Welsh football club had refused to honor a first payment to the club after the disappearance of the player in Argentina in January.

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In Nantes, on February 3rd, 2019.
In Nantes, February 3rd, 2019. Thibalt Camus / AP

The International Football Federation (FIFA) on Monday (September 30th) ordered the Welsh club Cardiff to pay FC Nantes 6 for the € 17 million transfer of Argentinean player Emiliano Sala, who died on January 21st with the pilot of the plane that was transporting him to his new club.

After the disappearance of the player, Cardiff had decided not to honor a first payment of 6 million euros, while it had been validated by the football authorities before the accident. Nantes had appealed to FIFA at the end of February to claim the full payment of the transfer.

The FIFA Players' Status Committee, chaired by South African Raymond Hack, met on Wednesday (September 25th) but only notified the decision on Monday to both clubs. They can appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), which is based in Lausanne.

Read also Emiliano Sala, a hard striker

FIFA had advocated conciliation

This commission ruled that Cardiff had to pay to FC Nantes "The sum of EUR 6 million, corresponding to the first installment due under the agreement concluded between the parties on 19 January 2019", for the transfer of Sala.

In its deliberations, the Committee took into consideration "The tragic and unique circumstances surrounding the dispute, including the decision not to charge litigation costs to the parties"said FIFA in its statement.

At the end of August, the court sent the two clubs a letter in which it advocated conciliation for the payment of the transfer of the Argentine footballer. Without the clubs' agreement, the file was therefore submitted to the commission of the status of the player who decided.

At the beginning of February, after long unsuccessful searches, Emiliano Sala's body was finally recovered in the wreck of the small plane and formally identified.

The wreck of the single-engine Piper Malibu that took the 59-year-old driver and the 28-year-old former Nantes striker to his new Cardiff club had been located where the plane was ceased broadcasting in the Channel, lying 67.7 meters deep, about 20 kilometers north of the Anglo-Norman island of Guernsey.

Read also After the disappearance of Emiliano Sala, the slow reconstruction of FC Nantes


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