Wednesday, February 28, 2007

TFF Refusing To Pay for Rustu Recber's Wages

The Turkish Futbol Federation on Monday evening rejected Fenerbahce's claim to have the TFF pay for injured goalkeeper Rustu Recber's wages. The claim was made after Rustu ruptured a knee ligament in the Turkiye vs. Italy friendly on November 15th. Rustu is expected to be out until at least the end of April.

The TFF board announced its decision after its meeting in Trabzon. The Fenerbahce board said in a written statement that they would appeal to the Arbitration Board as soon as they receive the reasoning behind the decision of the TFF.

Fenerbahce had asked the TFF to pay Rustu's wages during the time that he would be out due to the fact that he was injured during a national match, not while playing for the club. Fenerbahce Vice Chairman Şekip Mosturoğlu said at the time, “We asked the TFF to pay Rüştü's wages as stated in his contract for the period he will not be able to play for Fenerbahçe. We have a right to do that. As I recall, Galatasaray did the same when Hakan Ünsal was injured in a national match.”

It was not the first time a club has made this type of request. Last summer, Belgian first division side Charleroi brought a case against FIFA for 616,000 Euro because one of its players, Abdelmajid Oulmers, returned injured from an international friendly for Morocco in November 2004. Oulmers was unable to play for his side for more than 200 days, and Charleroi argued that his absence from the pitch affected its final league and cup standings. The case pitched FIFA against the G14 group of 18 major European clubs, which threw its support behind Charleroi. However last week the G14 group hinted it might drop its complaint to the European Court of Justice in connection with the affair. G14 official Thomas Kurth told Sport-Bild magazine that if UEFA President Michel Platini and FIFA boss Joseph Blatter “proposed an acceptable solution by the end of the season, there is a theoretical possibility that the G14 and Charleroi would withdraw their complaint.”

G14 are pushing for players on international duty to be insured, that clubs earn part of the profits from European championship and World Cup finals and places on both the UEFA and FIFA executive committees.

A similar claim could easily be made by Fenerbahce this season. Fener currently sits six points atop the Turkcell Super Lig, despite the unspectacular play by reserve goalkeeper Volkan Demirel. Fenerbahce has lost only four games this season, but it could easily be argued that a healthy Rustu Recber would have prevented at least two, if not three of those losses in league play.

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