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High Court Comes to Tevez’s Rescue

After taking a mini-break from Tevez-gate we are back. We had to wait till we heard what FIFA had to say and, quite unsurprisingly, those half-wits decided to pass the buck – this time to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. However Kia Joorabchian sprang into action and finally decided to do what he ought to have done way back in April (when the Hammers tore up his contract) – he serves a writ on West Ham, taking them to the High Court.

All this is pretty much the gist of the latest happenings in this tedious soap opera. So what now? Would the CAS do a better job? Would the High Court be our best option yet? Let’s look into this in a little more detail, shall we?

One of our readers, David, had sent me an email asking me to touch on the CAS and its powers regarding resolution of disputes. Well, it’s not that my knowledge regarding this is extensive, but I did come up with some facts about the CAS.

  • The CAS resolves disputes related to sports which may range from doping tests to player contracts as long as both parties agree to the arbitration.
  • The CAS does have experience dealing with player transfer. In fact, a bulk of the cases handled by the CAS is either doping tests and football transfer disputes.
  • One of the reasons why the CAS was setup was to provide justice in a speedy and inexpensive manner.

However the ‘speedy’ part may be ignored in our case because, from what I’ve read, cases dealt by the CAS typically take several months. But they also have ad-hoc committees created to speed up the process when they did that during the Sydney Olympics. Even now reports say that the CAS could resolve this dispute before Aug 31st – the day the transfer window shuts.

But again, CAS may only be able to resolve cases involving player ownership and which party the money is owed to. If they rule in favour of WHU, for example, then Joorabchian would have to again initiate proceedings for tearing up the contract in April. That would mean another set of courtroom proceedings, this time the High Court.

However, now that Kia is taking the case to the High Court and is desperate for a quick solution, it is up to West Ham to follow suit and face MSI/JSI in court. The High Court could handle both – the ownership (and hence the player fees), and the issue of West Ham tearing up the contract. And with the urgency both parties seem to be showing, to get this issue done with as soon as possible, the HC appears to us as the only realistic way of getting Tevez.

Eggert Magnusson did admit that he doesn’t see Tevez playing for the Hammers and it is only a matter of time. Also, the CAS general secretary was quoted as saying to the Telegraph that any hearing into the case could not be set up before mid-August, with a ruling delivered a week later. This means it would be very close to the transfer deadline date. And that is very little time to play with. This again points us to the High Courts.

So at the end of the day, while West Ham are eventually going to be screwed over whichever way, we as United fans should fervently hope that we don’t run out of time, of all the things, in our bid to sign Tevez.

Here are some good reads about the Tevez situation as well as the CAS.

The Telegraph’s view on the situation. A lot of this post owes to what’s been said in this article.

A brief idea about the CAS on Wikipedia and Slate. Hopefully that helps. I’d suggest the article on Slate.

16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. Aus_Devil

    July 25, 2007 at 10:27 am

    Thanks, a good overview of the steps ahead.

    On a side note… would there be any good to United perhaps coming to an agreement with West Ham as to a fee (in case the High Court rules in their favour and we have to hastily arrange a transfer fee with West Ham). This would leave United with an agreement settled with either party… therefore when the case is settled United just have to sign on the dotted line and hand over the cash. Any thoughts?

  2. gubby

    July 25, 2007 at 10:55 am

    The season begins as per usual.We have injuries to Neville, Hargreaves, and Scholes and longer term
    ones to Park & Foster.

    With Nani and Anderson only perhaps playing peripheral roles next season
    and Heinze wanting away (or does He?)

    However, this being balanced by the news that Ferguson has come out and confirmed that Rossi & Pique are
    staying.

    I believe Tevez is the final piece of the Jigsaw and should we lose him it will be a big blow.

  3. Nino

    July 25, 2007 at 11:05 am

    i agree with Aus_Devil; it makes sense. however, it would be no big loss if we did not get tevez until january, as long as he would not be cup-tied for FA Cup and Champions League. keeping hold of tevez will backfire on west ham as they would have a clearly unhappy player on their hands for the first few months, who would in turn affect dressing room atmosphere, team spirit, morale etc…would tevez be allowed to train with us until january or would he have stay and play at west ham?

  4. Northy

    July 25, 2007 at 12:44 pm

    I fail to see why the club and our fans are so confident of getting Tevez. Ignoring the tabloids, I understand the situation as West Ham DO own the
    player registration. West Ham did not tear their contract up – they cancelled the third party agreement. They are allowed to calcel that third
    party agreement as it was illegal. Whatever way you look at it – it seems that West ham have a right to be compensated by either the club or Kia. I’d like to buy the player outright and get rid of this Kia fella.

  5. Alvin

    July 25, 2007 at 1:31 pm

    The situation is pathetic i think.Man Utd is the buyer while west ham and MSI are sellers.So what i actually think is to just place the money ManUtd is prepared to pay aside(kept temp by CAS), and let Tevez play for ManUtd first.let the arbitrators take their own sweet time to sort out who will eventually get the money from Man Utd. they are so block head, anyone can think of a situation better than to go to the high court.

  6. Taehr

    July 25, 2007 at 2:17 pm

    This is y rossi should be kept.the kid is class.got a feeling tevez aint coming before january. Msi must have some kind of info on the deal if their willing to take west ham to court.does any1 know how long these things take?

  7. ebrahim

    July 25, 2007 at 2:27 pm

    sir alex is not goin to sell rossi.

  8. Shera

    July 25, 2007 at 4:06 pm

    alan smith is bein aloud to talk to middlesbrough!! gd news i think, on top of dt sir alex feels gabi heinze shud swear loyalt to united because we stood bi him during his recovery process and reitarated his stance tht heinze will nt be joinin liverpool evn mor gd news. Sir alex has also confirmed tht rossi and pique wil nt be leaving the club brill gd all round

  9. Shera

    July 25, 2007 at 4:08 pm

    i agree with alvin why not let tevez play for united and then sort out the players registration so then eventually decide who gets the money west ham or msi ??

  10. Ollie Y

    July 25, 2007 at 6:13 pm

    i believe that tevez is the missing piece in our puzzle,with him we will have a very good football player to partner rooney and with ronaldo and giggs/nani on the wing we will be scoring atleast 2/3 goals a game, with that in mind we have a OK defence with hargreaves and carrick helping out the defenders, van der sar is still a top class keeper on his day but can also be a bit unreliable. if we get tevez now (before 31 aug) the prem is in the bag and we can hopefully do well in the champo league 2! man utd r the best!

  11. Red Ranter

    July 25, 2007 at 7:27 pm

    [Aus_Devil, Alvin and Shera]
    That cannot be done legally. Because allowing Tevez to play for United would mean a transfer has taken place. If a transfer has taken place, it means the cash has been agreed between two parties. (And in this case, it means cash proportional to his current market value as insisted by the PL). Meaning, we would have to agree with Kia as well as WHU – which is not possible because, agreeing with Kia means we are recognizing that Kia is the rightful owner. Then we could definitely not agree a fee simultaneously with WHU because it would be in contempt of the agreement we made with Kia in the first place.

    Get my point? We would be unnecessarily dragged into a legal mess if we do this. I know this is all stupid, but with the legal situation the best we can do is stay out of it and let MSI and WHU/PL fight it out. After all, whoever wins, we would be the beneficiaries either way.

    Plus, we agreed terms with Kia because our legal counsel thought it fit to deal with them. So then, if we’d dealt with WHU we would be doing something illegal. Of course, you do realize that Tevez was not even allowed to go through his medical, leave alone play for us.

    Of course, we could let Tevez play for us if all parties agreed to it (which I am sure wouldn’t be a problem). But the Premier League will not allow it because it desperately needs to save face.

  12. Indian Devil

    July 26, 2007 at 10:15 am

    Everyone at WHU expects Tevez to go seeing Alan Curbishley’s extravagant spending and buying strikers. The main thing in this transfer is WHU want the money the full 30 mil that is disconcerting to Man Utd becoz as we would remember Tevez was given a permission to go evev before the saga with Inter began so effectively Tevez shuld be a free agent.

  13. Mick

    July 26, 2007 at 10:54 am

    This transfer window issue is a total red herring. If Tevez wins his case he’s a free agent and the
    transfer window doesn’t apply.

    The concern now is missing the initial games of the season and wanting Tevez to start his pre-season
    training as soon as possible, ’cause he ain’t gonna start training with the hammers, that’s for sure!

    With regards to the legal ins and outs, we have already agreed terms with MSI in good faith, as they
    were obviously able to convince Maurice Watkins that Teves belonged to them. The only stumbling block
    is his contract and registration with West Ham which will be anulled if the “third-party agreement”
    is found to be enforceable.

    IANAL but even if the third party agreement is found to be not legally enforceable, I still think Tevez
    will be allowed to leave WHU. When he signed the contract with them, he did so in the knowledge that
    both parties had agreed the contract could be acrapped at his request, at any time. This is an implied
    contract between Tevez and WHU and should stand up in court whether or not the third party agreement
    was legal at the time it was signed. If WHU had concerns about the third-party agreement they should
    have refused to sign it in the first place. They can’t use this agreemenet to convince a player to
    sign a 4-year deal and then scrap it without the player’s consent half way through the season. The
    original contract is only valid in the context in which it was signed in the first place.

    I honestly don’t see this as anything other than an open and shut case. And that’s why Gill et al are
    being so bullish about it. WHU are being forced into defending their stance by the EPL but you can bet
    that Egg-head and co know that they’re on a hiding to nothing here.

  14. Gubby

    July 26, 2007 at 7:34 pm

    @ Mick

    Excellent post m8.

    Hope you are right!!

  15. Ollie Y

    July 28, 2007 at 9:16 am

    there a new twist in the saga with his agent reporting the deal could be finished as early as next week in an out of court agreement. which will probably mean west ham no they r wrong and have agreed that we will pay west ham all the fee (to make the EPL happy) and the they will pay all/most of it 2 that Kia guy.

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