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ZURICH, August 17, 2018 (News Wires) - Four clubs -- two in Qatar, one in the United Arab Emirates and one in Iran -- have been fined and threatened with points deductions for ignoring orders to pay "overdue" amounts to players, FIFA said on Friday.

World soccer's governing body said in a statement that Qatar Sports Club and Al-Shamal Sports Club, both based in Qatar, Shabab Al Ahli Dubai (United Arab Emirates) and Saba Qom (Iran) had been given deadlines of between 30 and 90 days to pay up.

Any club which did not meet its deadline would be deducted six points in its domestic league and banned from signing players for the next one or two transfer periods, FIFA added.

The four had failed to comply with previous orders, either from FIFA or following appeals to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), FIFA said. The fines ranged from 15,000 ($15,054) to 30,000 Swiss francs.

FIFA said the decisions marked a "new framework" for debtor clubs.

In a separate decision, FIFA announced that La Liga side Atletico Madrid had been fined 52,000 euros ($59,192) for a deal with a player which involved "third-party influence".

FIFA said the Spanish club entered into a contract which "enabled a third party to influence the club's independence in employment and transfer-related matters", which breached transfer and players' status rules.

FIFA policy on third-party ownership bans either clubs or players from entering into economic rights agreements with third-party investors. Frequently such deals involve outside investors retaining or gaining a share in ownership of a player. ($1 = 0.9964 Swiss francs) ($1 = 0.8785 euros)


BERLIN, August 14, 2018 (News Wires) - Nigeria and Ghana could face international football bans this month over political interference with their football associations, world soccer’s governing body FIFA said on Tuesday in a final warning to the two African nations.

FIFA said the Nigerian federation (NFF) must be led by its elected president, voted in back in 2014, and its executive committee amid domestic challenges to the federation leadership.

“The Bureau of the FIFA Council decided that if by Monday, 20 August 2018, at 12:00 (CET), the Nigeria Football Federation offices are not handed back to the legitimate NFF executive committee under President Amaju Melvin Pinnick... the NFF will be suspended with immediate effect,” FIFA said in a statement.

“The suspension would be lifted only once the NFF, under President Amaju Melvin Pinnick and General Secretary Mohammed Sanusi, confirms that it has been given back effective control of the NFF and its offices.”

FIFA said any ban would not affect the Nigerian team currently competing in the women’s Under-20 World Cup in France as the tournament was already under way. Nigeria also took part in the men’s World Cup in Russia in June.

Ghana will also be banned this month if an order to liquidate its FA is not withdrawn.

“The Bureau of the Council considers that the petition introduced by the Attorney General to the High Court of Justice to start the liquidation process of the GFA constitutes undue influence in the affairs of the GFA in contravention of art. 14 par. 1 i) and art. 19 par. 1 of the FIFA Statutes,” FIFA said.

“Under these circumstances, the Bureau decided that if the petition to start the liquidation process of the GFA is not withdrawn by Monday, 27 August 2018 at 12:00 (CET), the GFA will be suspended with immediate effect. The suspension would be lifted only once the above-mentioned petition is withdrawn and FIFA is given written proof thereof.”


GENEVA, July 24, 2018 (News Wires) - Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah has been nominated for the Best FIFA Men's Player award for 2018. The Egyptian was Tuesday named on the 10-man shortlist for the prestigious accolade, which recognises the best male player over the last 12 months.

Salah's nomination comes in recognition of a remarkable debut season at Anfield following his move from AS Roma.

The 26-year-old scored 44 goals in 52 appearances in all competitions as Jürgen Klopp's team reached the Champions League final and secured qualification for this season's tournament.

His 32-goal haul in the Premier League broke the record previously jointly held by Luis Suarez, Alan Shearer and Cristiano Ronaldo for strikes in a 38-game season. Salah then scored twice in two appearances for his country at the World Cup in Russia.

Votes from the media, national team coaches, national team captains and fans will decide whether Salah's achievements are enough to see him take the gong at an award ceremony in London in September.

Full list of nominees:

Men's coach of the year: Massimiliano Allegri (Juventus), Stanislav Cherchesov (Russia), Zlatko Dalic (Croatia), Didier Deschamps (France), Pep Guardiola (Manchester City), Juergen Klopp (Liverpool), Roberto Martinez (Belgium), Diego Simeone (Atletico Madrid), Gareth Southgate (England), Ernesto Valverde (Barcelona), Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid)

Women's coach of the year: Emma Hayes (Chelsea), Stephan Lerch (VfL Wolfsburg), Mark Parsons (Portland Thorns), Reynald Pedros (Lyon), Alen Stajcic (Australia), Asako Takakura (Japan), Vadao (Brazil), Jorge Vilda (Spain), Martina Voss-Tecklenburg (Switzerland), Sarina Wiegman (The Netherlands)

Men's player of the year: Mohamed Salah of Liverpool, Tottenham's Harry Kane, Chelsea's Eden Hazard, Manchester City's Kevin De Bruyne, Atletico Madrid's Antoine Griezmann, new Juventus signing Cristiano Ronaldo, PSG's Kylian Mbappe, Barcelona's Lionel Messi, Real Madrid's duo Luka Modric and Raphael Varane are also included.

Women's player of the year: Lucy Bronze, Pernille Harder, Ada Hegerberg, Amandine Henry, Sam Kerr, Saki Kumagai, Dzsenifer Marozsan, Marta, Megan Rapinoe, Wendie Renard.


ZURICH, July 24, 2018 (News Wires) - Didier Deschamps and Zinedine Zidane lead the 11 candidates in a likely French domination of FIFA's best men's coach award.

Deschamps led France to win the World Cup, and his 1998 World Cup-winning teammate Zidane coached Real Madrid to a third straight Champions League title. Zidane, who has since left Madrid, won the FIFA award last year.

FIFA says its expert panel picked five World Cup coaches among the contenders. They include all four semifinalists - Deschamps, Zlatko Dalic, Roberto Martinez and Gareth Southgate - plus Russia's Stanislav Cherchesov.

Pep Guardiola is nominated for leading Manchester City to a runaway English Premier League title win.

The winners announced in London on Sept. 24 are voted by national coaches and captains, plus media from FIFA's 211 member countries, and fans voting online.

The nominees for The Best FIFA Women’s Player 2018: Lucy Bronze, Pernille Harder, Ada Hegerberg, Amandine Henry, Sam Kerr, Saki Kumagai, Dzsenifer Marozsan, Marta, Megan Rapinoe, Wendie Renard.

The nominees for The Best FIFA Women’s Coach 2018: Emma Hayes (ENG) – Chelsea Ladies, Stephan Lerch (GER) – VfL Wolfsburg, Mark Parsons (ENG) – Portland Thorns, Reynald Pedros (FRA) – Olympique Lyonnais, Alen Stajcic (AUS) – Australia national team, Asaka Takakura (JPN) – Japan national team, Vadao (BRA) – Brazil national team, Jorge Vilda (ESP) – Spain national team, Martina Voss-Tecklenburg (GER) – Switzerland national team and Sarina Wiegman (NED) – Netherlands national team.

ZURICH, July 24, 2018 (News Wires) - Four women and six men are on a 10-candidate list to win the FIFA award as the best coach in women's football.

FIFA says its expert panel's nominations include Sarina Wiegman, the 2017 winner who coaches the Netherlands, and Asako Takakura, who coached Japan to the Women's Asian Cup title.

The male candidates include Reynald Pedros, who led Lyon to a Women's Champions League and French league double, and Brazil's Vadao, whose team won the Copa America Femenina.

Later Monday, FIFA publishes candidate lists for the men's and women's best player awards, and the best men's coach.

The winners announced in London on Sept. 24 are voted by national coaches and captains, plus media from FIFA's 211 member countries, and fans voting online.

ZURICH, July 19, 2018 (News Wires) — Clubs from Russia and Qatar are among six fined by FIFA and warned they risk one-year transfer bans for failing to settle debts to players.

FIFA says the clubs also face deductions of six league points if they fail to pay the debts in 30 to 90 days.

The clubs are: Kuban of Russia; Al Arabi and Al Kharaitiyat of Qatar; Zamalek of Egypt; Al Jazira of the United Arab Emirates; and Mersin Idman Yurdu of Turkey.

FIFA says all failed to comply with rulings by FIFA or the Court of Arbitration for Sport "to pay significant overdue amounts of money to players."

They were fined between 15,000 and 30,000 Swiss francs ($15,000 and $30,000).

FIFA says national soccer federations face disciplinary cases if they fail to enforce the verdicts.

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