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Cardiff City face signing ban if they don’t pay Emiliano Sala transfer fee | UK News

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Cardiff City face a ban on signing new players if they fail to pay Nantes the first instalment of Emiliano Sala’s £14.7m transfer fee after he died in a plane crash.

The Argentine striker, 28, died in the Channel while travelling to the Welsh club on 21 January.

Cardiff and Nantes have disputed payment of his €17m (£14.7m) transfer fee, so football’s world governing body FIFA has taken over the case.

CARDIFF, WALES - JANUARY 25: Tributes are left to new Cardiff City F.C signing Emiliano Sala near the Fred Keenor statue at the Cardiff City Stadium on January 25, 2019 in Cardiff, Wales. Emiliano Sala is one of two people who boarded a Piper Malibu private plane on Monday night, taking the footballer from his previous club Nantes in France, to Cardiff City where he was due to begin training with his new team. Sala, originally from Argentina, had sent whatsapp messages to friends before the plane lost contact off Alderney in the Channel Islands. Rescuers have announced they are no longer actively searching for the plane. (Photo by Matthew Horwood/Getty Images)
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Tributes were left to Sala outside Cardiff City’s stadium

FIFA decided on 30 September that Cardiff owed Nantes the first instalment – €6m (£5.2m) – plus 5% interest from 28 January.

But documents revealing the details have only just been published.

They say Cardiff have 45 days to pay, starting from when Nantes provide their bank details, believed to have been last week.

Emiliano Sala
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Cardiff say Sala was technically never their player

If the club does not pay within that time FIFA will implement “a ban on registering new players, either nationally or internationally, up until the due amounts are paid and for the maximum duration of three entire and consecutive registration periods”.

That could mean Cardiff would not be able to sign any new players until summer 2021.

FIFA told Sky News that the 45-day period would stop if Cardiff lodged a formal appeal with the Court of Arbitration for Sport, which they have previously indicated they would.

Cardiff have argued Sala was not officially their player when he died as he never even reached Wales.

However, FIFA found all the terms in the agreement between Cardiff and Nantes had been fulfilled so he was technically their player.

A report from the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB), published in August, found Sala had a high concentration of carbon monoxide in his bloodstream before the light aircraft crashed.

Sala’s body was recovered but the pilot, David Ibbotson, has never been found.

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