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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Feb, 28, 2007

FIFA offer just £1m to Toon for Owen

FIFA say they have made a 'final offer' to Newcastle of £1million in compensation for Michael Owen's injury at the World Cup - six times less than the club are claiming from the game's world governing body.

Owen ruptured his cruciate knee ligament 55 seconds after coming onto the pitch in Germany last year and Newcastle are already receiving compensation from the Football Association of £50,000 a week towards his salary costs.

The club had submitted a separate claim to FIFA for £6.2million but the world governing body's president Sepp Blatter said they had made a final offer of 2.2million Swiss francs (£1million).

Blatter said the overall compensation should be shared between FIFA, the FA and the club's own insurers.

He told a media briefing in London: 'Newcastle have come saying they have to replace him with another player, that this is not fair.

'We have made a last offer there, and if someone has responsibility then it's the FA towards the player.

'The transfer regulations say players put at the disposal of the national team should be insured by their club. The competition regulations of the World Cup say the national associations must make sure the players are correctly insured.

'We have also set up a special fund for injuries to players for all 32 participants of the competition with a total of 15 million Swiss francs (£7million) available for everybody.

'If you look who is asking for money [from the fund] then something is wrong because it is from the richest league in the world.'

The FA's insurance policy covers a player's wages, capped to a maximum £50,000 a week, for 52 weeks.

Newcastle have also lodged a claim for further compensation from the FA as well as FIFA to cover the cost of signing £10million striker Obafemi Martins as a replacement for Owen, who cost £17million from Real Madrid.

An FA spokesman said: 'The position remains unchanged. We have been in constructive discussions with Newcastle since the World Cup.

'We are sympathetic towards their position with reference to the injury and those discussions are ongoing.'

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