WITH the transfer window in the United Football League now open, Global FC has joined the fray in player movements in the bid to shore up its roster and reclaim lost glory, announcing the signing of four players on Friday.
But the former UFL champion’s most significant addition was signed way ahead of time.
Global FC can now officially lay claim to the services of reigning MVP Rufo Sanchez after team owner Dan Palami confirmed the league has made a decision in Global's favor over the Spanish striker’s contract dispute..
Palami said the league finally decided that Global owns the rights to the 27-year-old Sanchez, who the powerhouse club signed to a contract last September after the Spaniard’s old deal with the Stallions expired the previous month.
Sanchez, also the league’s 2013 Golden Boot winner, has since been banned after getting in the middle of a tug-of-war for his services between his new team and Stallion, but the decision has now required his former team to issue a certificate of transfer.
The UFL, according to Palami, has also reduced Sanchez’s one-year ban to just six months, making him already eligible to play for his new club.
The development, however, came long after the league formed an appeals committee last November to make a resolution on several related appeals “as soon as possible.”
“The tragedy is more in the delay of the decision and in handing down a decision to ban him for an offense that had yet to be decided upon,” Palami told Spin.ph on Friday.
The uncertainty of Sanchez’s appeal forced the Spaniard to take his act to the Thai Premier League, where he signed a one-year contract with PTT Rayong FC last January.
“It is unfortunate that we are unable to show his talent here in the Philippines,” Palami said. “While he’s a foreigner, he’s a good player who is able to ply his wares in the UFL. He will make the (level of play) more competitive. That will make the (locals) better players and ready for international competition as well.”
Palami said Sanchez’s one-year contract with Global lasts until June, but clarified the club has reserved the option to re-sign him.
Asked if Sanchez can opt out of his Thai contract, Palami answered to the affirmative, but didn’t want to pressure the Spaniard.
“I think he can, but I don’t want him to. He doesn’t have to,” Palami said, adding he is in constant communication with the prized booter. “He’s enjoying his stay in Thailand and Global FC has always been understanding when it comes to player movements.”