Court of Arbitration for Sport upholds FIFA decision in Calhanoglu case

Media Release:

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has issued its decision in the dispute between the Turkish football player Hakan Çalhanoğlu and the Turkish football club Trabzonspor FC. 

Hakan Çalhanoğlu is ordered to pay €100,000 to Trabzonspor FC. Furthermore, the four-month ban imposed on Hakan Çalhanoğlu, by the FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber (FIFA DRC), which was suspended at the beginning of the CAS proceedings, is reinstated with immediate effect. 

In April 2013, Trabzonspor lodged a claim before the FIFA DRC arguing that Hakan Çalhanoğlu had breached the terms of their employment contract without just cause when the Player signed a contract with the German team Karlsruher SC. In January 2016, the FIFA DRC issued a decision in which the Player was found to have terminated his employment contract with Trabzonspor without just cause within the protected period and a sanction of a four-month period of ineligibility was imposed on him. 

Upon receiving the grounds of the FIFA DRC decision in March 2016, both Hakan Çalhanoğlu and Trabzonspor FC filed appeals at the CAS. Hakan Çalhanoğlu’s appeal was accompanied by a request to stay the execution of his four-month ban, pending the outcome of the CAS proceedings, which was granted. The Player sought the annulment of the FIFA DRC decision, whereas the club sought the return of a €100,000 advance that it had made to the player as well as compensation of €1 million. 

The two appeals were consolidated and treated as one procedure by a Panel of CAS arbitrators: Mr Mark A. Hovell, UK (President), Dr Michael Gerlinger, Germany, and Mr Hendrik Willem Kesler. 

The Panel conducted a hearing on 5 October 2016 and confirmed that Hakan Çalhanoğlu had breached the FIFA Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players (FIFA RSTP) and recognised that Trabzonspor FC did not comply with due diligence requirements in this matter. 

The Panel dismissed Hakan Çalhanoğlu’s appeal, but partially upheld the appeal of Trabzonspor in ordering that Hakan Çalhanoğlu pay €100,000 to Trabzonspor FC as reduced compensation for breach of contract without just cause.

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