FIFA rule on El Hadary dispute

FIFA has given the green light for Essam El Hadary to be provisionally registered as an FC Sion player, pending the resolution of the Egyptian goalkeeper's contractual dispute with Al Ahly.

The 35-year-old, who starred in the Egypt side who successfully defended their CAF Africa Cup of Nations title earlier this year, is seeking permission to move to Sion for a compensatory payment, the equivalent value of the remainder of his Al Ahly contract.

However, the Cairo outfit disputes this and have, according to media sources, fined and suspended El Hadary, who returned to Egypt for a time before pursuing his attempt to make his switch to Switzerland.

Today, FIFA announced its ruling on the provisional registration issue, saying: "We can confirm that the Single Judge of the Players' Status Committee has decided that the Swiss Football Association is authorised to provisionally register the player Essam El Hadary with its affiliated club FC Sion with immediate effect. This decision was communicated to the parties on 16 April 2008."

The Single Judge emphasised that this decision is without prejudice and pending the outcome of a possible contractual labour dispute between the player and Al Ahly. The Single Judge did not and could not decide on the substance of the contractual dispute between the player and his former club, Al Ahly, as only the FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber (DRC) has jurisdiction to pass a decision in that respect.

"The DRC will have to examine if a breach of contract has been committed, with or without just cause, who would be deemed responsible for such a potential breach, and its possible consequences", added FIFA in its statement.

The proceedings will now go on with further investigations to be carried out by FIFA. The DRC will then pass a decision as to the substance of the contractual dispute. The case will therfore remain pending with FIFA until further notice.