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August 6, 2008
CAS rules in favour of Werder: No duty to release Diego
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Legal victory for Werder Bremen before the CAS:


Following a case brought by the "green and whites" together with Schalke 04 and FC Barcelona, the international court of arbitration has established that clubs do not have a duty to release players for the football tournament which forms part of the Olympic Games. Consequently, it will now be up to the club whether Werder professional footballer Diego is able to take part in the matches in Peking.


"This verdict confirms our view of the law which we have upheld again and again during the last few months", said Werder’s Manager, Klaus Allofs, who continues to stress the fact that it is precisely this rule which is established in the statutes of the FIFA. "That is why we were not able to understand the behaviour and statements of various FIFA officials. The FIFA has failed in its attempt to revoke the existing paragraphs and to create new law. It was our duty to defend ourselves against this arbitrary approach."


On Wednesday afternoon, Allofs made it clear that there are no winners following the verdict. "Neither of the parties will be happy after this prelude. The delay that has been caused by protracting a clear-cut decision has now lead us into this impossible situation. Now, one day before the start of the Olympic Tournament, and three days before the start of our official match season, we have to decide whether to pull Diego from China", said Allofs who again showed appreciation for the affected players. "Looking at FIFA's course they had to assume a release obligation, and, above this, they were under enormous moral pressure from the Brazilian Football Association CBF."


While taking into account all of the circumstances, the management of Werder together with Chief Trainer, Thomas Schaaf, decided to take the following step: "Diego will be released to play in the Olympic Games while the Brazilian team remains in the Olympics, provided that the Brazilian Football Association establishes the basic conditions for his participation in the short term," says Allofs, who among other things mentions insurance cover for the player in the event of injury. A corresponding offer Werder Bremen has meanwhile made by fax to CBF via the lawyer Theo Paeffgen who also represented the Bundesliga Clubs in the proceedings at CAS.


The basic decision for Diego’s remaining in the tournament was not an easy one for Werder officials. "We also have great plans for all competitions this year and would like to have our best possible team available for the start of the DFB Cup and the first two Bundesliga matches. On the other hand, preparation for these matches, that due to the dispute had to be without Diego for the largest part, has advanced to a point, where a pull back would no longer make sense", so Allofs said who had tried to clarify the release problem for months. "We raised this matter with the FIFA in plenty of time. However, we have the impression that the matter was deliberately put off until the start of the Olympics in order to force the clubs into the current situation", says Allofs.


[Werder Bremen GmbH & Co. KG aA Press Release August 6, 2008]


Werder Bremen GmbH & Co. KG aA in this dispute with the Brazilian Football Federation and FIFA have been advised and represented before the FIFA Players' Status Committee and Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) by Paeffgen Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH, Bonn. Theo Paeffgen, Rechtsanwalt and Solicitor, led the team, supported by Rechtsanwalt Christian Eustermann.

© 2002-2018 Paeffgen Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH
Last modified January 11, 2018