The Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) has reached out to lawyers representing FIFA requesting mediation in their dispute over the appointment of a normalization committee in March, Sportsmax.TV sources indicate.

They now await a response from FIFA’s lawyers, Messrs M.Hamel-Smith and Co. indicating whether they will agree to the request.

The William Wallace-led executive was dissolved by FIFA in March and a normalization committee appointed just four months after the TTFA Annual General Meeting in November 2019. FIFA cited poor financial management and the FA’s massive debt as reasons for the appointment of the committee to oversee the association’s affairs.

William Wallace retained the services of Dr Emir Crowne and Matthew Gayle instructing them to take the matter to Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). However, in late May the New City Chambers attorneys were instructed to withdraw the appeal before CAS fearing ‘institutional bias’.

Subsequently, the matter was taken to the Trinidad and Tobago High Court of Justice.

Since then, Wallace has come under increased pressure from his board following revelations relating to three contracts signed with Avec Sports, national coach Terry Fenwick and Ramesh Ramdhan. All three contracts were reportedly signed without the required agreement from board members.

These revelations, first publicized on the the Sportsmax Zone, have turned the board members against the beleaguered president.-S

Power is the ability to direct or influence the behaviour of others or the course of events. Transparency in governance focuses on honesty and openness. Question; is it that when one gets power it clouds their ability to be transparent? 

Real Madrid have been champions of Europe 13 times and their first title came in dramatic fashion in Paris on this day 64 years ago.

Back in 1948, meanwhile, the New York Yankees welcomed Babe Ruth for one last time to the stadium where he wrote large chapters of baseball folklore.

Cricket's Twenty20 format initially upset many purists but has become a money-spinning, highly successful element of the sport since it was introduced in June 2003.

More recently, Spain's 2018 World Cup plans were left in tatters, with Real Madrid at the centre of another major sporting story.

 

1948 - Babe Ruth's last goodbye to Yankee Stadium

For the 25th anniversary celebration of Yankee Stadium's opening, there was a guest more special than all the rest.

The legendary Ruth was in the house, but it was clear for all to see that he was seriously unwell.

It was already known as 'The House That Ruth Built', and as Ruth stood with a baseball bat instead of a cane, it would be his last visit to his old stamping ground.

This was the day his number three shirt was retired. Stricken by cancer, and a shadow of his once powerful self, Ruth would die aged 53 on August 16 of the same year.

 

1956 - Real Madrid launch a dynasty

The first of 13 European Cup and Champions League triumphs for Real Madrid came at the Parc des Princes on this day.

Having beaten Milan 5-4 on aggregate in their semi-final, they faced a Reims side who had overcome Scottish outfit Hibernian to earn a rather short trip to Paris.

The French side surged two goals ahead in 10 minutes, before Alfredo di Stefano cut the deficit.

A dramatic match saw Reims 3-2 ahead with 25 minutes to play, but Madrid ran out 4-3 winners, Hector Rial's second goal of the game in the 79th minute proving to be the winner. Madrid won the tournament each year from 1956 to 1960, beating Reims again in the 1959 final.

 

1976 - Barker shows her bite

Sue Barker is better known to television audiences as a tennis presenter, often tasked with conducting on-court interviews with newly-crowned Wimbledon champions, and her grand slam success is regularly overlooked.

The greatest day of her playing career came on this day at Roland Garros, when Barker won the French Open with a 6-2 0-6 6-2 victory over Czech opponent Renata Tomanova.

The field had been weakened that year by the absence of defending champion Chris Evert, who elected to skip the tournament. Barker was the top seed, and capitalised.

 

2003 - Cricket takes the fast track

The England and Wales Cricket Board pioneered Twenty20 cricket, with the vision that it would draw a younger audience to the sport, and the short format made its debut on June 13, 2003.

The Twenty20 Cup launched with five matches in a day, with Warwickshire the highest-scoring side, piling up 188-7 at Taunton in a 19-run win over home side Somerset.

Warwickshire's Trevor Penney got into the spirit of the competition with a rapid 52 from 28 balls, clubbing four fours and three sixes.

2018 - Spain sack Lopetegui on World Cup eve

A day before the World Cup began in Russia, Spain's camp collapsed into chaos with the sacking of coach Julen Lopetegui.

The Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) was furious after Real Madrid revealed Lopetegui would become their next boss, an announcement that was said to have been conveyed to them just five minutes before the rest of the world knew.

It was the first the RFEF knew of any negotiations, and they swiftly ditched the man who was preparing to lead the country's bid for glory. Fernando Hierro took over, and Spain were eliminated on penalties by Russia in the first knockout round.

Lopetegui failed at Madrid but is back in business with Sevilla.

At the time of publishing, it has been 60 programme hours since the SportsMax Zone asked questions of the duly elected President of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association, TTFA, William Wallace.

Just about two weeks after they had retained the services of a noted Trinidadian law firm for their high court battle with the ousted executive of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association, FIFA has fired new lawyers.

In late May, attorneys from the Law Offices of Dr Claude H. Denbow S.C. filed papers in the Trinidad and Tobago High Court of Justice stating that they were representing FIFA in their dispute against William Wallace, whose executive they dissolved in March 2020.

 However, on Tuesday, June 9, a notice of change of attorney over the signature of Dr Emilio Garcia was filed stating that Messrs M. Hamel-Smith and Co. will now be representing FIFA effectively replacing the Law Offices of Dr Claude H. Benbow S.C.

Cherie Gopie was the filing attorney.

Lawyers representing Wallace are seeking a permanent injunction preventing FIFA from interfering or seeking to override the “fair and transparent democratic processes of the TTFA and/or preventing them from removing the executive of duly elected officers from office.”

They are also seeking a permanent injunction against FIFA preventing FIFA and/or its agents from interfering with the day-to-day management of the association, including its bank accounts, website and real property.

They are also seeking damages and costs.

 

 

Jose Mourinho knows how to make a grand entrance and he proved that at his unveiling as Chelsea manager.

Though June 2 is the date 'The Special One' first arrived on the scene in the Premier League, it was also a day that saw a significant change at FIFA.

Meanwhile, in motorsport, Formula One icon Michael Schumacher got off the mark for Ferrari.

We take a look at the major sporting events to have happened on this day through the years.

 

2004 – The Special One lands in London

Having won the Champions League with Porto, Jose Mourinho arrived at Chelsea with the reputation as one of the world's best up-and-coming coaches.

And - as a sign of what was to come - the Portuguese wasted little time in creating the headlines, declaring himself 'The Special One' during his unveiling as the Blues' new boss.

"We have top players and, sorry if I'm arrogant, we have a top manager. Please don't call me arrogant, but I'm European champion and I think I'm a special one."

He was proved right, his Chelsea side going on to win the Premier League with a then-record 95 points in his first season, also winning a record number of matches (29) during the campaign.

2015 – Blatter's reign comes to an end

A matter of days after he had been re-elected, Sepp Blatter stepped down as the president of FIFA on June 2, 2015.

Blatter's resignation came amid a huge corruption scandal, with the U.S Attorney General Loretta Lynch having announced an investigation into FIFA the previous week.

The Swiss was ultimately cleared of corruption charges, though he was banned from FIFA for eight years for a "disloyal payment" of two million Swiss francs to the then-UEFA president Michel Platini.

He appealed in 2016, managing to get the ban reduced to six years from the initial eight.

1996 – Schumacher clicks into gear for Ferrari

On June 2, 1996, Michael Schumacher put in what is widely considered to be one of the finest performances of his career.

Having to recover from a poor start in adverse weather, Schumacher took the lead in lap 13, going on to dominate the race and win for the first time in a Ferrari.

The German ultimately finished over three seconds a lap faster than the remainder of the field. However, it would be another four years until he claimed his first F1 Championship crown in a Ferrari seat.

1935 – Baseball legend Babe Ruth calls it a day

An iconic figure of American sports, one of baseball's all-time greats - Babe Ruth - retired on this day 85 years ago.

However, his incredible career ended on something of a sour note.

Having signed for the Boston Braves from the New York Yankees, in a role that would also see him serve as the vice-president and assistant manager, Ruth announced his retirement midway through the season.

His reason was a disagreement with Braves owner Judge Emil Fuchs, with Ruth saying: "Judge Fuchs is a double-crosser. His word is no good. He doesn't keep his promises. I don't want another damn thing from him—the dirty double-crosser."

FIFA has retained the services of the renowned Law Offices of Dr Claude H. Denbow S.C. in their dispute with the ousted executive of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) that is now before the Trinidad and Tobago High Court of Justice.

The William Wallace executive, guided by Dr Emir Crowne and Matthew Gayle of New City Chambers, is seeking a permanent injunction to prevent FIFA from interfering or seeking to override the “fair and transparent democratic processes of the TTFA and/or preventing them from removing the executive of duly elected officers from office.”

They are also seeking a permanent injunction against FIFA preventing FIFA and/or its agents from interfering with the day-to-day management of the association, including its bank accounts, website and real property.

They are also seeking damages and costs.

FIFA’s attorneys filed their entry of the appearance in the courts on Tuesday stating their intent to defend their decision to dissolve the TTFA board and appoint a normalisation committee to oversee the running of the TTFA, mere months after the board was voted into office in November 2019.

“We will be responding to the claimant’s case in early court and I am not allowed to discuss our client’s business,” said instructing attorney Donna Denbow,

“It is not our practice to discuss our client’s business in public. We will be putting our case on paper before the judge in early court.”

The matter stems from FIFA’s decision to dissolve the William-Wallace-led board four months after the November-24 elections in which the David John-Williams executive was swept from power.

FIFA, in a letter dated March 17, 2020, notified the TTFA that it was appointing a normalization committee citing the association’s extremely low or non-existent financial management and financial governance.

William Wallace said the decision was befuddling since the bulk of the TTFA’s TT$50 million debt was accrued under the previous administration.

Lawyers representing the ousted executive mentioned this concern in a letter to FIFA on March 20.

“The political backdrop of this matter is not lost on those we represent. The ‘existing debt of at least US$5.5m was wholly accumulated under or as a consequence of actions taken during the previous TTFA administration.

“That notwithstanding, FIFA stood idly by and took no punitive steps whatsoever. Now, in the face of a new administration with less than three months substantive tenure, which now threatens to uncover the rank impropriety of the previous administration by installing a regime of financial probity, the FIFA steps in an attempt to prevent this,” the lawyers wrote.

The executive took the matter to the Court for Arbitration for Sport but eventually withdrew over fears over what they described as ‘institutional bias’ in favour of football’s world governing body.

 

Lawyers representing William Wallace and the ousted executive of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) were today granted permission to serve documents o FIFA pertaining to their case against them to be heard in the Trinidad and Tobago High Court.

The Football Association (FA) will face FIFA in court next month to challenge a ruling relating to Chelsea's transfer ban.

Chelsea were punished in February 2019 for breaches of the rules pertaining to the international transfer and registration of players under the age of 18.

Initially barred from making any signings for two transfer windows while also hit with a fine, the Premier League club had their punishments reduced on appeal.

The FA, meanwhile, was fined 510,000 Swiss francs (£391,000 as it processes player registrations. However, an appeal saw the amount lowered to 350,000 Swiss francs by a FIFA committee.

English football's governing body has now escalated the case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. A hearing is due to take place on June 26.

When contacted by Stats Perform, an FA spokesperson said: "The FA has cooperated fully with FIFA’s investigation. As this is an ongoing legal process it would not be appropriate to comment further at this time."

Women's football can thrive beyond the coronavirus crisis but must avoid the pitfall of overburdening top players, Netherlands head coach Sarina Wiegman has warned.

For leading European stars, the next five years promise to be intense, with a major tournament each year.

The delayed Tokyo Olympics takes place in 2021, with Netherlands defending their European Championship title in 2022, followed by a World Cup in 2023, the Paris Olympics in 2024, and Euro 2025 capping off a hectic period.

Wiegman told Stats Perform: "I think we have a very big challenge, because in theory we have five tournaments in five years in a row, which means we have a challenge to see and work out when the break [can come] for the players and other people who work very intensely in the women’s game."

She welcomed the move to switch the Euro 2021 tournament in England to new 2022 dates, saying: "Then I think we have our own stage, our own platform with the women's game. There's no competition with other football tournaments and I think that's what the women’s game deserves."

That tournament will take place in July, in a year when the men's World Cup is contested across November and December.

And while 50-year-old Wiegman, who led the Dutch to glory at home three years ago, is relishing a European Championship title defence, she is determined to guard the players' welfare.

"We need to take responsibility for players," she said. "We all want to have our top players in the main games, which is the tournaments, which is Champions League, which is top games in competition.

"Players want that too, the fans want that, and the coaches want that.

"But if we keep pushing them and keep giving load on them without any holiday or rest, then we're going to have a problem and a chance of not having the best players at a time when we want them to shine."

Football law-makers have approved FIFA's plan to let teams make up to five substitutions in a match, while VAR could be temporarily dropped by leagues.

It will be at the discretion of each competition whether new guidance is implemented.

FIFA proposed the change from three substitutions to five as a move to protect player welfare in the coronavirus era as football slowly returns to normal.

The International Football Association Board (IFAB) gave its nod of approval, but the new law will be applicable only in competitions scheduled to finish by the end of 2020.

VAR could also be temporarily cut, with football re-emerging at a difficult time when it may not always be possible to implement the same technology as before COVID-19 took hold.

IFAB said in a statement on Friday: "For competitions which have either started or are intended to start, but are scheduled to be completed by December 31, 2020, the IFAB has approved FIFA's proposal to introduce a temporary amendment to Law 3 – The Players, which will allow for a maximum of five substitutes to be made per team.

"However, to avoid disruption to the game, each team will only have three opportunities to make substitutions; substitutions may also be made at half-time.

"The temporary amendment comes into force with immediate effect, and has been made as matches may be played in a condensed period in different weather conditions, both of which could have impacts on player welfare.

"The decision on whether to apply this temporary amendment will remain at the discretion of each individual competition organiser, while the IFAB and FIFA will determine at a later stage whether this temporary amendment would need to be extended further (e.g. for competitions due to be completed in 2021)."

The IFAB statement added: "In relation to competitions in which the video assistant referee (VAR) system is implemented, these competitions are permitted to cease its use upon restart at the discretion of each individual competition organiser.

"However, where VAR is used, all aspects of the Laws of the Game and, by extension, the VAR protocol will remain in place."

Lawyers representing the ousted executive of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA)  led by William Wallace have written to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) expressing concern over what they have described as a “number of irregularities which have arisen, irregularities that have caused their clients to believe their right to a fair hearing has been impugned.”

Wallace and his executive have taken FIFA to CAS over the latter’s decision to appoint a normalization committee to oversee the running of the TTFA, which in effect sidelined the Wallace-led executive that was constitutionally elected in November 2009.

Among the concerns to which the lawyers - Dr Emir Crowne and Matthew Gayle - refer arose from correspondence from CAS in which it mentioned hiked costs Wallace and his executive are being compelled to pay in advance of the tribunal hearing while at the same time declaring that FIFA will not pay arbitration costs in advance in matters such as these.

The costs mentioned amount to 40,000 Swiss Francs or approximately US$41,000, which the Wallace-led executive, the Appellants, must pay in full. The lawyers said that they are unsure how CAS facilitates access to justice with such extravagant fees.

According to the correspondence obtained by Sportsmax.TV, CAS indicated that “as a general rule, FIFA does not pay any arbitration costs in advance when it acts as a Respondent in a procedure before CAS, which is admissible to CAS pursuant to Article R64.2 of the Code. This means that, according to the same provision of the Code, the Appellant has to pay the entirety of the advance of costs.”

In response, Dr Emir Crowne penned a letter to CAS on Thursday, May 7, arguing that the costs are unfair “…particularly since the hearing would have likely taken place by video conference and the usual travel costs of the panel and the CAS’ counsel would have been eliminated.

“To that end, we are genuinely unsure how the CAS facilitates access to justice with such extravagant fees. The Appellants are not from the developed world, nor are they as well-financed as the Respondent.”

The lawyers also argue that the matter is made even more alarming since the tribunal accepted without question FIFA’s submission that they wanted the matter heard by three arbitrators, thus tripling the associated costs.

“On its face, therefore, the CAS appears to be a willing participant in the Respondent’s gamesmanship, especially if the CAS had institutional knowledge that the Respondent – an entity with immeasurable financial resources – would not be advancing their share of the arbitration costs,” the lawyers said.

“This is at least an unacceptable display of apparent institutional bias.”

In light of the development, the lawyers revealed that FIFA subsequently issued a letter to the CAS indicating that they (CAS) must suspend FIFA’s response to the Appellants until the Appellants pay the full costs. CAS, they said, has agreed that FIFA should be able to benefit from the extension.

“As it stands, there are very real doubts that the CAS remains an appropriate and fair forum for the resolution of this dispute,” the lawyers concluded.

 

 

 

 

The Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) is to propose an increase to the number of substitutions allowed in LaLiga matches when the season resumes.

Spain is gradually easing out of lockdown as the country aims to recover from the coronavirus pandemic, with professional football having been suspended since March.

LaLiga confirmed on Monday that teams could return to training this week, with a restart planned for June.

But as football prepares to return, the RFEF – backed by LaLiga – is to request IFAB allow a change to the number of substitutions allowed during a match, with the primary aim of protecting players' health after an unexpected pause in the campaign.

The RFEF, which claims to have the backing of FIFA, is to propose an increase to five changes from three, with the substitutions allowed at three different times throughout a game.

This rule change would apply to all RFEF competitions, including Segunda B and the Tercera, which are set to be settled by promotion play-offs.

"With this proposal, the RFEF wants to go ahead and propose measures that favour the health of footballers," stated president Luis Rubiales.

Bruno Fernandes' transfer to Manchester United from Sporting CP is under investigation by FIFA after Sampdoria launched a claim against the Portuguese club.

Sampdoria's complaint relates to payments they believe they are entitled to following Fernandes' move for an initial £48million (€55m) to Old Trafford in January.

The Portugal midfielder joined Sporting from Sampdoria for €8.5m in June 2017.

Sampdoria's claim concerns Sporting alone, meaning there is no suggestion United are guilty of any impropriety.

In a statement released to Stats Perform. a FIFA spokesperson said: "We can confirm that on 3 April 2020 the Italian club, UC Sampdoria, lodged a claim with FIFA against the Portuguese club, Sporting Clube de Portugal, related to financial obligations set out in the contract corresponding to the transfer of the Portuguese player, Bruno Miguel Borges Fernandes.

"The matter is currently being investigated and consequently we cannot provide further comments."

A report by The Times claimed Sampdoria believe they are entitled to €4.65m under a sell-on clause under the terms of Fernandes' move to Lisbon.

However, the 25-year-old was one of several Sporting players to rescind his contract before re-signing following an incident in May 2018 when fans invaded the club's training ground and attacked members of the squad.

It is thought Sporting believe they no longer have obligations to Sampdoria under the new contract Fernandes signed, given he technically penned that as a free agent to render any sell-on element null and void.

Fernandes has impressed since joining United, scoring two goals and supplying three assists in five Premier League matches before the 2019-20 season was placed on hiatus amid the COVID-19 crisis.

FIFA's top medical officer takes little satisfaction from being the man appealing for restraint from leagues that are desperate to get playing again.

The coronavirus pandemic has crippled football seasons across the globe and severe economic consequences have become inevitable.

There are concerns about clubs going bankrupt and leagues collapsing, with broadcast deals called into question and players left in limbo.

Many stars have taken pay cuts or deferred wages and the 2019-20 campaign in the Netherlands and France has already been abandoned.

Michel D'Hooghe, formerly head of the Belgian football federation and president of Club Brugge, is chair of FIFA's medical committee and has said there should be no return to action before September.

Speaking to Stats Perform, D'Hooghe said of the French league being called off: "I cannot be happy because I am a football man, but I am also a doctor.

"And the doctor in me, seeing what he sees and with his long experience in medicine and in football for over 50 years, I advise everybody whatever is the solution, and in each country it can be different, I advise everybody to be very, very careful.

"I respect all the economic argumentations. I know them: I've been six years chairman of a professional league, I've been 14 years president of the Belgian federation, and I've been six years president of my club, so I know the economics around football, but there is for the moment one other priority and that is health.

"If there is a moment where health should win… this is the moment."

D'Hooghe added: "I am not looking for popularity. I am looking for a realistic approach.

"This is the solution for tomorrow, the care of today, and if we can manage that, if we can respect the rules imposed by the public authorities, I think we will win the fight and I hope it sincerely."

He said it would be "a heavy responsibility" to give football the go-ahead while coronavirus continues to spread and causes thousands of deaths.

D'Hooghe also warned that behind-closed-doors football is a flawed solution to the coronavirus problem, along with any scenario involving groups mingling under present circumstances.

"In my opinion, football has always been a contact sport - the first rule in nearly all the countries coming from the public authorities is: avoid any contact," D'Hooghe said.

"For me, it's difficult to play a football match when you have to stay two metres from each other. This is not a football match.

"This is the first objection. The second objection is that we have to avoid group formations, people coming together.

"Of course the players come together on the field, of course they are together in the dressing room, of course they are together under the showers.

"And of course if you allow people coming to the stadium you have thousands.

"We have some experience of that - always some groups of fans come together, sometimes secretly in places where they can join each other to assist any way to the football match."

As for when it might be sensible for leagues to re-start, D'Hooghe stressed it is too soon to say with any conviction.

"In the meantime we will try to find intermediate solutions to perhaps allow a certain form of playing football and I would be the first one to be happy with that," he said.

"But it must be between some rules and these rules are rather strict for the moment."

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