Aliadiere resolves Lorient issue
Lorient claim the pay dispute that led Jeremie Aliadiere to refuse to play for the club in a friendly last weekend is over, but have still not ruled out selling the former Arsenal forward.
Aliadiere, 30, showed vestiges of the talent that once made him one of French football's hottest properties as he scored 15 times in 31 outings for the Breton club last season.
However, the ex-Celtic and Middlesbrough striker removed himself from Christian Gourcuff's squad during Saturday's 1-1 draw with neighbours Brest due to a clause in his contract which meant a wage cut of €15,000-a-month this season.
The clause was inserted into the agreement, for a single season with an option until 2015, signed when Aliadiere moved to Lorient in summer 2011 following a year out of the game. Given the player's injury-dotted career, the deal stipulated a lowering of his wages from the 2013-14 campaign.
L'Equipe reported Loic Fery, the Lorient president, had reached a verbal agreement with the player in June that the clause would not be activated, and called Aliadiere on Sunday afternoon to reaffirm his promise.
"I've spoken to Jeremie Aliadiere. Everything is sorted out regarding his contract. He assured me he would give his best for Lorient. He will be punished all the same," Fery stated on his official Twitter feed. "I've punished Aliadiere for refusing to play. With his contract situation clarified, his objective: a great season and Les Bleus."
There had been speculation Aliadiere was attempting to force a move away from Lorient with reports earlier in the summer Marseille were tempted to make an approach for him. However, the forward told L'Equipe he merely wanted to have Fery's agreement in writing.
"In football, I've learned to be wary of promises, and between the end of June and Saturday, I'd seen nothing concrete. Now there's no more misunderstanding, and everything will be signed [on Monday]," he said. "My attitude had nothing to do with leaving. I've always said I would leave if everyone got what they wanted. I will never try to force the arm of the club to go."
Fery, who made his fortune in finance, did admit Aliadiere could be sold if his modest club were given the right offer.
He said: "Who doesn't want to play at a big club? I can't name a price, because we're not selling, even if no player is untransferable. For the moment, there's not been a respectable offer. So there's a 90% chance Jeremie plays for us next season."