UEFA angered by G14 stance

UEFA tonight accused the G14 clubs of being hell-bent on “the destruction” of international football.

UEFA tonight accused the G14 clubs of being hell-bent on “the destruction” of international football.

The biggest teams on the continent are currently involved in what could prove a landmark legal fight with the game’s governing bodies over the issue of compensation for players injured on international duty.

The G14 are supporting Belgian club Royal Charleroi’s bid to sue FIFA for damages of £414,000 after key midfielder Abdelmajid Oulmers was sidelined for eight months after picking up an injury playing for Morocco two years ago.

The case has been referred to the European Court of Justice.

“These are cases we need to win if we want to save the national teams,” said UEFA director of communications William Gaillard on BBC Radio Five Live.

“These are direct attacks on the European sports model.

“I think if most citizens in Europe knew that what G14 was attacking was the national teams – they want to destroy the national teams clearly and abruptly - there would be a general revolt against this kind of purpose.

“People have to be told that the consequences of the courts interfering with the governance of the game are the destruction of the European sports model and the destruction of football as we know it.”

UEFA’s stance is in marked contrast to that of the G14, who last week appointed Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein as their new chairman.

Earlier this week, their spokesman James Thellusson told PA Sport’s Football Insider te group of 18 of the continent’s most successful clubs were hoping Dein’s appointment would allow it to settle its differences with FIFA and UEFA in an “amicable” manner.

Dein will form part of the new management committee and in his new role will aim to smooth relations between G14 and world and European football’s governing bodies.

“What he has said is that he will be trying to get a result with FIFA and UEFA over the next year, so he will be reaching out to them to get some form of amicable solution,” Thellusson said.

“The key goal for G14 is finding a solution to the issues of player release, player insurance and governance, as it has always been.

“The issues that are at the heart of the Charleroi case are the issues that need to be resolved.”

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