The World Leagues Forum(WLF) has written to the Football world governing body, FIFA and the Confederation of African Football (CAF) saying that they will not release players for 2021 Africa cup of nations to be held in Cameroon in January.
The FIFA rules states that clubs should release players by December 27, but WLF said the date was “unreasonable and disproportionate” for many clubs and players in action this month.
WLF which represents more than 40 professional leagues in the world, said they had written twice to FIFA and CAF last month but did not receive an answer and any punishment for not releasing players would be “null and void”.
” As indicated in our unanswered letter of November 19, more than a month ago, we consider that the FIFA rule must be adapted”, WLF Secretary General, Jerome Perlemuter wrote in a letter sent on Thursday and seen by Reuters.
“As a consequence, in order to mitigate the impact of the decisions made on the afcon, we consider that the release of players shall start on January 3 for those clubs and players having matches before then. We will also consider that any sanction imposed by FIFA will be deemed abusive, null and void’.
While most leagues go on Christmas break in Europe, the English premier league is different as matches continue without break. This is the case with Liverpool that have pleaded with the Egyptian FA to withhold Moh Salah till after the January 3, because they want him to feature in Liverpool’s premier league clash against Chelsea on New Year’s day.
The WLF also stressed on the fact that they still pay salaries to players while releasing them for afcon, but however they are open to dialogue and cooperation in matters relating to the match calendar.
The Afcon will run from January 9, to February 6, 2022.