Expatica news

FIFA asked to rule on disputed El Hadary transfer in test case of CAS ruling

29 February 2008

ZURICH – FIFA is to consider whether Egypt goalkeeper Essam El Hadary can complete his disputed move to a Swiss club.

El Hadary is currently practicing with FC Sion, which has offered Egyptian club Al-Ahly US$400,000 to buy out the final two years of his contract.

The case is the first test of a landmark ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport last month that gives players more power to decide when they switch clubs. FIFA has criticized the ruling.

World soccer’s governing body has been asked by the Swiss Football Association to take up the case, FIFA spokeswoman Adriana Pontieri said Friday.

The CAS ruling denied Scottish league club Hearts compensation and awarded only the value of Andy Webster’s remaining contract after the defender left to join Premier League team Wigan in May 2006.

The judgment further strengthens players’ bargaining power 12 years after the Bosman ruling, which allowed them to move without a transfer fee at the completion of a contract.

The 35-year-old El Hadary played in Egypt’s winning team at the African Cup of Nations last month.

[Copyright ap 2008]