Cardiff City have confirmed they will appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) after being ordered by FIFA to pay the first instalment of $6.5 million to Nantes for striker Emiliano Sala.
Sala signed for Cardiff in January but was killed in a plane crash in the English Channel on Jan. 21. He was flying to Cardiff to being training with his new team after completing his $18.4 million transfer to the then Premier League club.
Nantes had complained to FIFA that Cardiff hadn’t paid them the first instalment for Sala, as the Welsh side claimed it wasn’t legally binding and the two clubs met FIFA in Switzerland last week.
FIFA then ordered Cardiff to pay the transfer fee for Sala, and the Bluebirds have released the following statement as they confirmed they will appeal to CAS.
“Following FIFA’s update on their announcement regarding the transfer of Emiliano Sala, Cardiff City Football Club will be launching an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Cardiff City FC is extremely disappointed at the decision of the Players Status Committee to award against the club. It would appear the committee has reached its conclusion on a narrow aspect of the overall dispute, without considering the full documentation presented by Cardiff City FC to FIFA.
“Nevertheless there remains clear evidence that the transfer agreement was never completed in accordance with multiple contractual requirements which were requested by Nantes, thereby rendering it null and void. We shall be appealing to CAS in order to seek a decision which considers all of the relevant contractual information and provides clarity on the full legal situation between our two clubs.”
Cardiff added that “this is a complex matter, which includes ongoing civil and criminal considerations both in the UK and abroad, which will likely have an impact on the validity of the transfer. It is therefore vital that a comprehensive judgement is reached following a full assessment and review of the facts.”