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Volume 6 No. 212

International Football

Spain's Supreme Court has "dismissed the appeal" made by former Barcelona President Joan Laporta and seven of his directors, and has confirmed the sentence handed down by the Provincial Court that ruled they should provide guarantees for losses incurred in the '02-03 season, according to MARCA. The losses, which occurred during Laporta's first season, total €63.8M. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Barcelona club member Vicenç Pla, who first took the case to court, and has "also ordered Laporta to pay legal costs." Laporta and former directors Alfons Godall, Jaume Ferrer, Alfonso Castro, Joan Boix, Josep Cubells, Rafael Yuste and Albert Perrín "will need to guarantee" €23M ($30.9M), corresponding to 15% of the budget that the club approved for the '06-07 season. According to the sentence, the sum "should have been guaranteed by the board of directors" after having run up a loss €63M at the end of their first mandate (MARCA, 2/11). MARCA also noted Laporta and his directors originally "did not provide this guarantee" because the losses from the '02-03 season belonged to former President Joan Gaspart. Furthermore, given the profits made by Laporta in the other seasons during his first mandate, the Spanish Professional Football League (LFP) "exonerated Laporta and his board of having to provide the guarantee." However, the Supreme Court ruled the LFP cannot have the ultimate word in this aspect since it is a "legal duty" for guarantees to be given for professional sports clubs under the "Ley del Deporte" (MARCA, 2/11). 

Brazilian football agent Renato de Moura Ricardo has been fined 7,000 Swiss francs ($7,619) by FIFA’s Disciplinary Committee after being found guilty of "violating the players’ agents regulations and the code of professional conduct." He has also been ordered to pay costs for the case which relates to the transfer of goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes to EPL club Tottenham Hotspur from Eredivisie side PSV Eindhoven in July '08 (REUTERS, 2/11). ... The Portuguese Football Federation (FPF) headquarters in Lisbon were robbed on Sunday. Thieves stole the computers of FPF President Fernando Gomes as well as his assistant (O JOGO, 2/11).