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Just In On Sports: Cristiano Ronaldo arbitration case: Juventus clarify ruling

Juventus
epa09188531 Juventus? Cristiano Ronaldo during the Italian Serie A soccer match Juventus FC vs AC Milan at the Allianz Stadium in Turin, Italy, 9 May 2021. EPA-EFE/ALESSANDRO DI MARCO

Juventus clarified that the ‘Ronaldo Paper’ that emerged during investigations into the so-called salary manoeuvres was nonbinding and will review the arbitration board’s decision.

The Serie A giants released an official statement on Wednesday night after an arbitration court ruled the club had to pay their former striker Cristiano Ronaldo nearly €10m plus interest following the Portuguese’s legal action.

Ronaldo had left Turin in 2021 with €19.5m in outstanding salary and wanted the sum to be repaid in full.

“Juventus Football Club S.p.A. (“Juventus” or the “Company”) announces that, with reference to the arbitration proceeding brought by the former registered player Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro (“Former Registered Player”) against the Company, today the arbitration board has transmitted to the parties its decision on the dispute,” said the Serie A giants.

“The arbitration board, with the decision made by the majority, ascertained the validity of the Former Registered Player’s compensation reduction agreement in relation to the 2020-21 sporting season and recognised the absence of any supplementing agreement entered into between the parties, hence concluding that the so-called “Ronaldo paper” (“carta Ronaldo”) lacks any binding effect; thus, the arbitration board rejected the Former Registered Player’s requests concerning the invalidity of the compensation reduction agreement and the fulfilment of the supplementing agreement;

they also rejected the request concerning the annulment of the compensation reduction agreement, recognising the absence of fraud by the Company, whose conduct did not affect the Former Registered Player’s willingness to enter into such compensation reduction agreement; they partially granted the request made by the Former Registered Player in the extreme alternative, ascertaining Juventus’ pre-contractual liability resulting from the failure of negotiations and ordering the defendant to pay an amount of approximately Euro 9.8 million (equal to half of the amount requested by the Former Registered Player of approximately Euro 19.6 million).

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“The Company, also with the support of its legal counsel, is reviewing the decision made by the arbitration board, reserving all assessments and initiatives to preserve its rights.”

What Juventus’ statement means

Juventus said the private agreements with Cristiano Ronaldo were nonbinding, so the arbitration court rejected the player’s request to cancel the compensation reduction and fulfil the supplementing agreement. However, the court also ascertained Juventus’ ‘pre-contractual liability’ which means the club must pay nearly €10m to their ex-star.

The club also suggest this is not the end of the story as they are now reviewing the decision made by the arbitration board and don’t rule out any initiative to preserve their rights.

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