Vital Football

Latest Arsenal FC News

The need for other fair play rules

The need for other fair play rules

Sebastien Squillaci's transfer to Arsenal seems to have carried a bit of a theme in some of this seasons transfer shenanigans. Allegedly he refused to play in Sevilla's first leg CL qualifying game against Braga once knowledge of an offer from Arsenal was known. There is some doubt about the precise circumstances as there is a suggestion that the coach had selected him without any knowledge of any impending transfer and that it was a discussion between Seville's sporting director, who would have known, and Squillaci that lead to the player withdrawing himself. Whatever did go on the transfer was one that Seville were quite happy to make public and reached an agreement fairly swiftly with Arsenal despite any actions attributed to Squillaci.

The transfer of Mascherano from Liverpool to Barcelona, and the potential transfer of Begovic from Stoke to whoever, has also involved those players apparently refusing to turn out for their teams. Some might cynically claim that a footballer refusing to play football for Stoke perhaps isn't so much of a controversy as a tactical requirement, to the extent that it is employed by those out on the pitch. Nevertheless the justification for doing so is usually to put pressure on the selling club to accede to the players' wishes and to avoid reducing the value of the player to the buying club. Either way it's a distasteful aspect of not only player power but the encouragement of clubs to pressure players to act against the club they are contracted to in order to facilitate the transfer in favour of the buying club.

It's not too hard to understand the motivation but that doesn`t make it acceptable. Curiously though football seems to have much tougher rules for players refusing to play in meaningless international friendlies than it does for players refusing to turn out for the clubs they are contracted to.

Fabregas faces the prospect of flying to Argentina during the present international break to take part in a friendly match for Spain a few days before our next league fixture. Under Fifa statutes any player picked by his national association is, as a general rule, 'obliged to respond affirmatively when called up'. If a player refuses the invitation or if his club refuses to release him he can be prevented from playing for his club for up to 7 days after the date of the international fixture. Any club fielding a disallowed player under those conditions in that time can be deemed to have lost the fixture he took part in and forgo any points or progress in the competition involved.

In contrast refuse to play for the club that pays your wages and other than perhaps the prospect of the club taking limited disciplinary action the authorities will turn a blind eye to it. If football decided sometime ago that regulations compelling a player to turn out for his national team were needed then why should their clubs not receive a similar level of regulatory support? Maybe this is a decision that needs to be made to lean a little more towards the contracted club. Should a player refuse to play in a match for which he is selected without just cause then he should be automatically banned from playing in the equivalent competition for any other club for a proportion of the rest of that season, maybe even all of it, be it domestic or continental competition. This would instantly discourage the player from taking such action and the buying club from encouraging him to do so.

Player contract law has loosened significantly in favour of the player over recent times. Effectively no contract lasts more than 3 years or 2 years, depending on age, due to the limited action that can be taken once a player is outside his protected period of contract. Players need to accept that with this greater freedom of contract there is a responsibility to ensure that they honour the contracts they do sign.



Join Vital Arsenal

Want to comment on this article? It's easy to register , simply click the link and enjoy getting involved (you can even win prizes!)

Message Board To visit the message board, click here. Get involved




Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Amos
Date:Monday August 30 2010
Time: 8:23AM

Best of Vital Network

Comments

0
But then.. Would you willing to have another Joleon Lescott incident?
MrE._Man
30/08/2010 09:54:00
0
The wisdom of playing a wantaway player too early is a matter for the manager to decide but it's as much about removing an incentive for the buying club to encourage a player to be disruptive as it is about thwarting a players wishes. Either way it should be a decision for the contracted club to make not the player.
Amos.
30/08/2010 10:47:00
0
it's a very tough situation...contract law tends to be against enforcing performance of employment contract for perceived slavery-type scenarios (amazing when you think about it, that a player who earns many people's yearly salary in a week could be classed as a slave, but...) the only real remedy available is an injunction stopping them playing for other clubs for the duration of the contract and damages in the event of a breach of contract...having a player sitting out is not a beneficial situation for the club, whether or not wages paid during this period are recoverable. It reduces their sell on price, and is detrimental to the club's on field performance. How can you possibly stop a strike like this? I really have no idea...
jl13
30/08/2010 11:00:00
0
Nice piece Amos, and your spot on with your point above. If a player is fit and deemed suitable for selection by the manager, then that player PLAYS. Regardless of any ' interest ' from other clubs, that particular player is contracted to play for the club and MUST do so, if selected. It is for the CLUB to decide to leave that player out of the team IF they feel they want to sell the player, or have entered serious negotiations with another club. This is where the transfer ' window ' is wrong. All DOMESTIC transfer deals MUST be concluded 1 week before the start of the new season. Clubs have had ALL summer to conclude their business and accquire their transfer targets. It is ridiculous to let it drag on 3 weeks into the season, thus disrupting team preparations and unsettling players.
Cockney Rich
30/08/2010 11:03:00
0
Amos> There are extensive sanctions for players who breach contracts. The problem is that clubs don't apply them because they punish the club as well. If they complain to FIFA, the player can be banned for a lengthy period. That's going to make things better, right? As far as I can see, the solution to this is through the courts, by suing the player for breach of contract, rather than anything to do with FIFA or UEFA. You also have to look at whether there's any difference between Mutu being liable for great big wodges of cash when he broke his contract, and cases like this.
user banned
30/08/2010 11:16:00
0
@user banned - Mutu was sued for the transfer fee that Chelsea paid on the basis that he did not disclose his cocaine addiction. Something akin to misrepresentation. He then had his employment contract cancelled for drug use. I dont think this could extend to a Mascherano type scenario.
jl13
30/08/2010 11:51:00
0
I don't think resorting to the civil courts is a practical solution. By the time most cases are settled many players would have finished their playing careers. The regulations regarding turning up for international duty don't have to be enforced that often - rarely at all. It's enough that they exist to oblige compliance. It would be just as easy to adopt a regulation to help control the actions of players and clubs towards their contractual obligations.
Amos.
30/08/2010 12:04:00
0
Shut the transfer window domestically one week before the season starts. Any player at a club for the start of the season knows that he MUST play for the club until at least January. Any games missed by the player ( unless injured or not selected ) will result in 1 weeks loss of wages, and a 3 match ban per game missed, if / when that player signs for his new club.
Cockney Rich
30/08/2010 12:09:00
0
UB: There aren’t any Fifa or Uefa statutes which would impose sanctions against a player for refusing to play for his club. There are other sanctions regarding termination without just cause but those aren’t relevant in this situation.
Amos.
30/08/2010 12:13:00
0
Agreed wih CR there..the transfer window can start early and closed before the season starts..its an alternative though..and I think its up to the player's professionalism..if you are a professional player..you'll play for your club until you officially sign for other. Having said that, Squillaci case is an exception because if he plays the CL game, then he cannot play for us. IF Sevilla wants him to play for a league match, then he should've played.
Malaysian_GunnerZ
30/08/2010 12:42:00
Page 1/2
  1. 1
  2. 2

Login to post a comment

Recent Arsenal Articles

Back To The Drawing Board After Vardy Snub

Gunners search for a striker continues

Six Clubs Set 2015/16 Premiership Records

Who were the six clubs to register a record breaking or equalling 2015/16 campaign?

Xhaka Likes To Beat Manchester United

Who doesn't?

A Faint Whiff of Premier League Action

The fixtures are here

Archived Vital Arsenal Articles

Vital Arsenal articles from

Site Journalists

Rocky7
Editor email
Profile
ClockEnd124
no email
Profile
Amos
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

Player of the Year
Suggested By:
Petr Cech4%
Hector Bellerin7%
Mesut Ozil78%
Alexis Sanchez8%
Olivier Giroud3%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Leicester City 38 23 12 3 81 32
2 Arsenal 38 20 11 7 71 29
3 Spurs 38 19 13 6 70 34
4 Man City 38 19 9 10 66 30
5 Man Utd 38 19 9 10 66 14
6 Southampton 38 18 9 11 63 18
7 West Ham 38 16 14 8 62 14
8 Liverpool 38 16 12 10 60 13
9 Stoke 38 14 9 15 51 -14
10 Chelsea 38 12 14 12 50 6
11 Everton 38 11 14 13 47 4
12 Swansea 38 12 11 15 47 -10
13 Watford 38 12 9 17 45 -10
14 WBA 38 10 13 15 43 -14
15 Crystal Palace 38 11 9 18 42 -12
16 AFC Bournemouth 38 11 9 18 42 -22
17 Sunderland 38 9 12 17 39 -14
R Newcastle 38 9 10 19 37 -21
R Norwich 38 9 7 22 34 -28
R Aston Villa 38 3 8 27 17 -49
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Recent Arsenal Results (view all)

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.Naijagunner6
2.Mike2942
3.Louis9991
4.princeoflove9091
5.Joe_@**1