Fujairah fire back against Jorge Valdivia’s contract claims

Fujairah club insist they did not sign any contract with Jorge Valdivia and have expressed their surprise at the Chilean’s claims to the contrary, reports Ahmed Rizvi.
Jorge Valdivia, left, shown here playing for Chile in the 2014 World Cup this summer, has claimed wrongdoing by Fujairah of the Arabian Gulf League during their recent contract negations. AP Photo/Frank Augstein
Jorge Valdivia, left, shown here playing for Chile in the 2014 World Cup this summer, has claimed wrongdoing by Fujairah of the Arabian Gulf League during their recent contract negations. AP Photo/Frank Augstein

Fujairah club insist they did not sign any contract with Jorge Valdivia and have expressed their surprise at the Chilean’s claims to the contrary.

Last week, in an interview with Brazilian website Globoesporte, Valdivia’s agent Wagner Ribeiro threatened to take Fujairah to Fifa for reneging on their €5.5 million deal with the Chilean, claiming they had a copy of the contract signed by both parties.

Read more: Jorge Valdivia’s agent threatens to take Fujairah to Fifa for reneging on contract

Later, at his first press conference since his return from the UAE, Valdivia reiterated those claims, but Sultan Al Shara, Fujairah’s chief executive, has challenged the 30-year-old midfielder and his agent to present proof.

“There was no final contract between Jorge Valdivia and Fujairah football club,” Al Shara said. “Our position is very sound legally and it is very strange to hear Valdivia and his agent talking about their desire to file a complaint against the club.

“We have nothing to hide. We did not sign any final contract, neither face to face, or through fax or the internet, nor did we sign any document that would put us in a position requiring Fifa’s intervention. Valdivia is fully aware about these facts.

“Yes, we were very close reaching a final agreement, but we could not close it. All the clubs in the world negotiate with players. Some negotiations succeed, others fail, which is what happened between Valdivia and Fujairah.

“We did have an agreement with Valdivia’s club Palmeiras and they allowed the player to travel to the UAE to negotiate the second part of the deal. The negotiations, however, were suspended because of the player’s sudden decision to travel. We do not know the reasons why Valdivia did that and changed his mind about playing for Fujairah, and we do not wish to speculate.

“Because Fujairah and Valdivia did not come to an agreement, the deal we had with Palmeiras is also void since it was based on the condition that Valdivia also accepts the agreement between the two clubs. So we are really surprised by the things the Valdivia and his agent have been saying in Brazil.”

Read more: Jorge Valdivia ‘soap opera’ bounces back in Fujairah’s direction

Al Shara also claimed Fujairah were put off by Valdivia’s excessive financial demands after his arrival here, but the player insists there were no disagreements between him and the club.

“We signed a contract with Fujairah and they told me an official presentation to the media will be made on August 5,” Valdivia was quoted as saying in the Brazilian media. “After that, I went to the United States for a vacation as there was no need to stay back.

“But when I came back, I found that the deal had been cancelled. I don’t know why, but it is not true that it happened because of differences on financial matters. That is a lie and I have my signatures on the contract to prove that.

“I had said goodbye to the Palmeiras fans, had cancelled all my phone numbers in Brazil, and taken my children out of school in anticipation of the move.

“Fujairah showed me off to the world and I wore the No 10 shirt. Fans came to receive me at the airport and I gave interviews. After that, I left for the vacation without any concerns.”

Al Shara, however, said all those things could not be construed as evidence of a formal contract.

“Fans coming to the airport to receive players is not unusual in the UAE,” he said. “We always give our guests a warm welcome and Sheikh Maktoum bin Hamad Al Sharqi [the club chairman] came personally to meet him on his arrival in Fujairah at dawn. That showed our keenness.

“But his appearance in the team jersey does not mean a final agreement. It was just a gift for the player.”

arizvi@thenational.ae

Follow our sports coverage on twitter at @SprtNationalUAE

Published: August 10, 2014 04:00 AM

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