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German clubs to let Olympians play, Messi wants to stay in China

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Just when you thought things couldn’t any stranger in the battle between FIFA and European clubs eager to keep their top players from playing in the Olympics, now comes word that just hours after a court ruling allowed the clubs to recall their players, two of the three clubs will let their players play in the Olympics.

Werder Bremen and Schalke 04 are set to let Diego and Rafinha play for Brazil in the Olympics provided the Brazilian federation provide some proof that the players will be covered by some sort of insurance. The clubs have decided to let their players play because of the late timing of the ruling in their favor.

That leaves FC Barcelona star Lionel Messi, who wants to stay in China with the Argentina Olympic team, according to his Olympic team coach. Let’s face it, if Messi stays, what will Barcelona do? Suspend its best player? Would FIFA really help Barcelona in that instance?

Does any of this make sense? No, not really.

What do you think about this latest development? Who do you blame for this mess? Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. The real question: What was FIFA thinking when they allowed UEFA to place CL qualifiers, CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers, etc overlapping the Olympic soccer tournament. If FIFA really thought that the Olympics were a tournament that has priority on the international calendar they shouldn’t have placed all these other important matches on top of it.

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  2. would anyone else not be shocked if mens soccer is dropped from future olympic games? i know players say they want to win for their countries, they should worry about world cups, euros, etc….

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  3. I blame UEFA and the clubs. They’re responsible for the fixture congestion. This is a summer tournament, it has historically been timed to avoid the European club schedule. It’s their own damn fault for gumming it up with play-in games for the Money Hat League.

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  4. I wonder if the players should have told their clubs in the beginning that they were going. Like Ives said, are the clubs really going to suspend their young star players because they want to play in a tournament for their countries?

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  5. Clearly its Don Garber’s fault!

    Just another example of rule swapping, single entity, mickey mouse, not enough talent, too low salary cap, relegation needing….

    ….Uh, never mind.

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  6. I agree 100% with Chris. FIFA should have ruled long ago, and if the ruling was that clubs must release players, FIFA should have worked with UEFA & the IOC to clear calendar space.

    As it is, Barca should let Messi play, but clubs should make it a priority to have a clear set of expectations in place by the time 2012 rolls around.

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  7. Schalke and Barca aren’t the only clubs that will be missing players going into the CL qualifiers. Off the top of my head I know Athetico Madrid and Fiorentina have starters on their teams that will be missing, and I don’t know who’s on FC Twente, but being that the Netherlands are one of the teams competing in the Olympics I’m sure they must have a player or two called up from them as well. Just these other teams haven’t made as much of a fuss over things.

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  8. Well it’s not totally about insurance money. Some of these clubs have important CL qualifying matches to play and now have to do so without important players on their teams. If one of these teams doesn’t go through they’ll be very upset that they had important players taken from them during such crucial matches. I would say FIFA is to blame for this because 1) they waited to long to make a firm decision on this one way or another and 2) they didn’t create a window in the club calendar for the Olympics.

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  9. Barca shouldn’t have to abide this nonsense. They should just wash their hands of the whole thing and sell him to Chelsea.

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  10. if they are letting their players stay and play, what was the point of all this? insurance policy could have been figured out w/o going through this. My head hurts from all this mess.

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  11. “Sadly, money was the real issue and not the players themselves. Clubs pay the wages and they should be concerned but I’ll never understand why they just aren’t upfront about what they want? And what they want is compensation if injuries occur.”

    This is not true. The clubs have to play important matches, in Barca’s and Schalke’s case the CL qualification. You don’t want to take any chances there.

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  12. Nel, why blame FIFA? If they made the ruling a month ago, then he wouldn’t even have gotten this far.

    And yes, this is all about insurance, if he does his ACL in the Olympics then Barca lose millions. I’m not saying I agree, just offering the stance of these big clubs. If it wasn’t for the laws already in place these clubs wouldn’t even let these players participate in WCQ games, they only do so because they are obligated.

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  13. I am very much capitalist pro-business and all that. But FIFA and IOC are not like “normal” even very large multinational corporations. They have no competition and are humongous bureaucracies that do pretty much what they pleased. No checks and balances. And they make real money and wield real power. So, its hard to fell sympathy to either one.

    Players – is another thing all together. They stuck in-between. I think Messi risks nothing just because of his superstar status. Somebody of smaller stature would be in a tighter squeeze.

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  14. Barca should just let Messi stay. Otherwise, when it is time to extend his contract, he will remember this and insist on Barca accepting that 100 billion billion pound bid from Ch$#ski. (I am aware that Messi’s connection with Barca runs deeper than most South American stars’ connection with their European clubs.)

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  15. If the issue all along was coverage in case of any injury why the hell didn’t these clubs just say it in the first place? Sadly, money was the real issue and not the players themselves. Clubs pay the wages and they should be concerned but I’ll never understand why they just aren’t upfront about what they want? And what they want is compensation if injuries occur.

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  16. Messi kinda looks like the snow lions on the Tibetan flag… I think he could easily be worked into some freedom marches that are already in the works.

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  17. Lionel have your agent call Lloyd’s of London and get your legs insured for $100 Million and play in the Olympics.

    So let me get this straight Barcelona would have preferred he played in Chicago and NYC in exhibition matches?

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