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By ESPN Staff

Werder make progress over Diego impasse

Werder Bremen have received 'positive signals' from FIFA in their search for an agreement with the Brazilian Football Association over the release of midfielder Diego for the Olympic Games.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on Wednesday ruled in Bremen's favour in their case against FIFA, who had earlier insisted it was 'mandatory' to release all players under the age of 23 for the Olympics.

The ruling meant Bremen were not obliged to release Diego, but after consideration the Bundesliga side agreed to allow the player to remain on international duty, as long as they received certain assurances from the Brazilian FA (CBF)

They and Bundesliga rivals Schalke want the CBF to provide insurance against any injury to their players Diego and Rafinha for the duration of the Games.

And FIFA, who had made an appeal for clubs to release players and abide by the spirit of the Olympic Games, have responded swiftly to Bremen's request for insurance to be provided.

'We contacted the Brazilian FA and FIFA as soon as the judgment was made yesterday and informed them of our demands,' said Bremen's director of sport Klaus Allofs. 'While we have yet to hear from the Brazilian FA, we have received positive signals from FIFA.

'Above all, it is about protecting Bremen from financial damage in the event of an injury to Diego and there should be an adequate insurance cover for the player.

'Paying a fee for us releasing the player or paying his wages while he is not available to us is not one of our priorities.'

Allofs also revealed he has contacted Diego to inform him he would not be called back to Germany and insisted there are no hard feelings between club and player.

'We hope that he remains free from injury and scores one or two goals,' added Allofs.

'We had a productive discussion before he left and there is no conflict between Diego and Werder.

'I think that he will pay us back sportingly for the way we have compromised.'


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