Knowledgeable observer of English football, Frédéric Waseige reacts harshly to the decision of the Arbitral Sports Tribunal to lift the suspension for two years of any European competition that had been inflicted in Manchester by UEFA. As he specifies, not on the merits of the file, but on the moral meaning of this decision.
Frédéric Waseige, are you surprised by the CAS decision?
“Yes, I am frankly surprised. I have been re-commenting on Premier League matches for 3-4 weeks and I was confident that fifth place would qualify for Europe because I thought City was going to be suspended. I am a gentle utopian, I was hoping for a moral boost, but once again, this is not the case. Now, I do not know the details of the file, it may be very solid. I am not ruling on the merits, but on the moral meaning of this decision.“
Do you have the feeling that we only lend to the wealthy?
“Yes. At the outset, the money of several large clubs, whether it came from the Gulf or from Russian oligarchs, was already not very clean. That said, the evil is not new. 30-40 years ago, the big clubs could already afford everything, at that time it was mainly in terms of refereeing that it was happening. It is a reflection of the time, it is like the current world. The money makes the law, and the power is reserved for the people of power, and everyone cheats. Clubs can pay better financial experts, poachers are richer than gamekeepers.“
We punish harshly “small” Turkish clubs, but when it comes to PSG or City, it works. Does financial fair play still make sense?
“Yes, if we really give them the means to achieve their ambitions. But the word “fair play” attached to “financial”, I already have doubts. We must stop pretending. There are beautiful statements, but behind it there is nothing. However, they had the opportunity to make an example. UEFA, FIFA, CAS, the way it all works, it becomes very embarrassing. They made the mistake of giving the World Cup to Qatar. We thought of taking it away from them, and then finally no, we will play it well there. Once again, power is reserved for people of power.“