Cardiff City have been placed under a transfer embargo after failing to pay the first installment of the fee owed to Ligue 1 club Nantes for Emiliano Sala, their Championship team. It was confirmed to the BBC on Saturday.
Sala died in a plane crash in the English Channel while traveling to Cardiff after signing for the club for 15 million pounds ($18.21 million) in January 2019. Flight captain David Ibbotson also died.
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Cardiff appealed against FIFA’s decision ordering them to pay the first installment of his transfer fee, which amounted to €6 million ($6.35 million).
The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruled in August that Cardiff had to make the down payment to Nantes. The Welsh club has appealed the CAS decision to a Swiss federal court, with a ruling expected next year.
Cardiff said they were also talking with the English Football League and world soccer’s governing body FIFA to resolve the issue.
Championship club president Mehmet Dalman said he was confident they would be able to lift the ban before the January transfer window reopens.
“I wish I had the strength to lift the shadow of this situation from the club,” Dallman told the BBC. “The people in this club want this to be resolved.”
“People should not forget that … a man was killed when this accident need not have happened. There is a human side to this story, it’s not just a financial side.”
Dallmann said there were “a lot of legal discussions” going on and that the club received its first bill from Nantes.
“We did not push it and we do not intend at this stage to push it until certain negotiations bear fruit,” he said.
Cardiff are 20th in the Championship after 23 matches.