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Cardiff set for CAS appeal over Emiliano Sala transfer fee

Emiliano Sala celebrates after scoring in Nantes' Ligue 1 win over Toulouse.
Emiliano Sala agreed to join Cardiff from Nantes.

Cardiff City are appealing to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) following FIFA's judgement over the transfer fee for the late Emiliano Sala.

FIFA announced on Monday that Cardiff City need to pay Nantes the first instalment of £5.3 million of Sala's £15m transfer fee.

- Borden: In search of Emiliano Sala

Sala died in a plane crash in January while travelling from Nantes to Cardiff after the two clubs agreed upon a transfer for the Argentine striker. After his death, the clubs failed to reach an agreement over the striker's outstanding £15m transfer fee so Nantes referred the case to FIFA in April.

Cardiff City believe the transfer was never completed, while Nantes are demanding the full £15m fee.

Following FIFA's decision, Cardiff have since confirmed they will be "launching an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport."

"Cardiff City FC is extremely disappointed at the decision of the Players Status Committee to award against the club," the Cardiff City statement read. "It would appear the committee has reached its conclusion on a narrow aspect of the overall dispute, without considering the full documentation presented by Cardiff City FC to FIFA.

"Nevertheless there remains clear evidence that the transfer agreement was never completed in accordance with multiple contractual requirements which were requested by Nantes, thereby rendering in null and void.

"We shall be appealing to CAS in order to seek a decision which considers all of the relevant contractual information and provides clarity on the full legal situation between our two clubs.

"This is a complex matter, which includes ongoing civil and criminal considerations both in the UK and abroad, which will likely have an impact on the validity of the transfer. It is therefore vital that a comprehensive judgement is reached following a full assessment and review of the facts."

Nantes called on FIFA to intervene in April after Cardiff City failed to make the first payment of the full transfer fee. FIFA originally gave both clubs until April 3 to submit their evidence but the deadline was extended after Cardiff wrote to Nantes in March in the hope of sorting the matter out internally. The clubs failed to reach an agreement so FIFA stepped in.

Nantes wanted the full transfer fee for Sala and sources told ESPN FC in April the French club were "extremely confident" of FIFA ruling in their favour.

The first instalment of Sala's transfer fee was initially due on Feb. 20, but the deadline passed without Cardiff making the payment.

Sources say Cardiff see the transfer as null and void as they believe certain criteria in the original contract were unfulfilled. Nantes, in turn, are adamant the transfer was completed and Sala was a Cardiff player when he died.

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