G14 backs Charlerois legal action against FIFA

The elite G14 group, representing 18 of Europe's most powerful football clubs has thrown its weight behind a "relatively obscure" Belgian first division team in a legal challenge with FIFA. According to Sport Business, the issue relates to compensation for players injured while on international duty.

The G14 is backing the Charleroi club's claim for financial help after Abdelmajid Oulmers was out for eight months when he tore ankle ligaments playing for Morocco. The midfielder was injured in a friendly against Burkina Faso last November and missed the rest of the season.

"In March 2004, G14 filed a complaint with the Swiss Competition Commission claiming violations of Swiss competition law committed by FIFA in adopting and using the same regulations cited by Royal Charleroi. As it is G14's wish to seek a once and for all clarification if these regulations are legal, it is sensible for us to join this case," G14 general manager Thomas Kurth told the organisation's official website.

"FIFA, which refuses to negotiate with the G14, has always maintained it is up to national associations to reimburse clubs for players on international duty and is not the responsibility of the world governing body [as] 75 percent of the profits from major tournaments such as the World Cup are ploughed back into the national associations who decide themselves what to do with the money," Sport Business commented.