The club-versus-country row hit a new row this month as several European clubs decided to protest against their players going to the Olympics to play for their respective national teams.
Then Sepp Blatter stepped in and the FIFA head demanded that all players release their players for the Games. The clubs however did not lay the matter down to rest and decided to go to the Court of Arbitration of Sports,
CAS has now declared that world football’s governing body could not force teams to release anyone, as the Games fall outside their jurisdiction.
And this has forced Sepp Blatter to loosen his strings and come out with some harsh thoughts. The FIFA president told Reuters TV:
“I’m very disappointed, I cannot understand this ruling. Just now when the Olympics Games has started because now we are in a very difficult situation.
“If this ruling is applied to all the players here then we have no Olympic tournament.
“This is absolutely nonsense. I cannot understand how CAS, which is an emanation of the Olympic movement, made such a ruling.
“The clubs could say ‘let’s let them play and we could be financially compensated’. Is that the Olympic spirit?
“We can’t let them go. We can’t see them return home, a day before Games start, putting in danger an entire tournament.”
Sort of complicated, isn’t it?