Thursday, January 9, 2014


I know you have waited patiently, and I apologize. The reality is others are starting to get wind of things in a tricky Juan Agudelo situation, so consider this forced spillage. I wanted to carry on digging a little longer, but as we have seen already, plans are often best used to make God laugh.

So... let's start with the law. FIFA law. Apparently, there is a very real chance that Agudelo has remained a Stoke City man all along, even after his work permit denial. It seems there is a FIFA statute that says signed pre-deals can not simply be voided because of such things as the player failing to gain registration or picking up an injury. Now, I do not know if this would hold up in court if it came to that, or even which court it would hypothetically go to.

What I do know is Stoke are busily trying to find Agudelo a loan home - perhaps for the rest of the season, conceivably with an instant recall clause in the event he wins a work permit when allowed to apply again in March. He has been in contact with potential loan options in Belgium, the Netherlands (at least two there) and Spain. Obviously, these are countries without so many non-EU hurdles, though there is the Dutch minimum salary requirement which says an American passport gets one paid no less than about a half-million Euros per full season.

I cannot yet confirm or deny a fresh Daily Mail rumor linking him with Anderlecht, but Belgium's Het Laatste Nieuws (which is typically far more trustworthy than a UK tabloid) has already shot that down. I will say this much: it does kinda makes sense, most notably because Matias Suárez is out for the rest of the season. I can also not confirm if Valencia is still an option. My gut says the opportunity is gone, but admittedly my gut has not yet found proof for this theory.

I can confirm that good ol' AZ was among the Eredivisie clubs offered Agudelo on loan by Stoke, but they passed. Naturally, I am trying my best to pinpoint who said "Hmmm, naaah" and who thinks he could help on a short stay.

An MLSS report will follow at some point, hopefully with an added detail or two about possible destinations.

- Greg Seltzer


Zach said...

Wonder if Staebek would be an option? Too small?

Greg Seltzer said...

I would imagine so, but right now who knows what could go on?

RobUsry said...

This transfer window just keeps getting better. Our players need better agents.

Unknown said...

Greg--I think the FIFA statute you are looking for is Article 18(4) of the FIFA Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players, which says:

"The validity of a contract may not be made subject to a successful
medical examination and/or the grant of a work permit."

The Dispute Resolution Committee doesn't like to find contracts invalid on the basis that a player did not receive a work permit. (and I don't recall that ever happening). Maybe the question now is whether this type of situation chills interest in signing players to pre-contracts where that player would not be entitled to a work permit without appeal.