Juventus and Livorno have been ordered by FIFA to pay a combined 21 million euros in compensation to Chelsea on behalf of Adrian Mutu, according to Gazzetta dello Sport.
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The money relates to the Blues’ request for damages in relation to a breach of contract after the striker, sacked by the London club in 2004 after testing positive for cocaine use, subsequently joined the Bianconeri via Livorno, for whom he did not make a single appearance.
No fee was paid at the time and Juve insist the player was a free agent when they signed him in January 2005 but Chelsea, after failing in their attempts to receive a fee of 17.7 million euros directly from the Romanian, have now been told by FIFA’s dispute resolution chamber that they can demand the money from the two Italian clubs instead the report says.
Adding interest to the initial request, 21 million euros is now owing -- an amount which is growing by 2,500 euros each day and is set to mount up for a while longer with Juve and Livorno turning to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to resolve the issue for good.
Livorno are likely to claim that they were used by Juve to sign the player to get around league rules which said they already had too many non-EU players on the books as grounds to dispute the ruling.
The Tuscan club acted as the official holders of Mutu’s registration, passing him on to the Bianconeri, for whom he played 34 times in Serie A, scoring seven goals.
Mutu's one-season spell, before he moved to Fiorentina, may now cost Livorno and the reigning Serie A champions more than 21 million euros if they do not receive a favourable response from the CAS in Lausanne.
Mutu, now 34, currently plays for Corsican side Ajaccio in France's Ligue 1.