What if the Hakim Ziyech incident occurs in the K-League?

Reporter Seo Ho-jeong = The biggest issue that marked the end of the European football winter transfer market was Hakim Ziyech’s loan transfer failure. Ziyech, who joined Chelsea in the summer of 2020 after a stellar performance at Ajax, did not fit in well with the team. Ziyech, who was recognized for his value again by leading Morocco’s sensation at the Qatar World Cup, took a new opportunity to rent to Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) after receiving interest from several teams in the winter transfer market. 

Ziyech flew to Paris, and the personal agreement and medical test were easily completed. The agreement between the clubs was finalized on the evening of January 31, local time, and all that was left was the administrative work of completing registration through transfer-related documents. But here, Chelsea, the original team, repeatedly made mistakes in the delivery of documents. The normal documents arrived around 11:00 pm on the 31st, just one hour before the registration deadline. There was not enough time to complete the procedures such as player registration, and in the end, it was not finished until midnight. 

PSG filed an objection due to lack of physical time required for computer registration, and the French Professional Football Federation (LFP) even held a legal committee to discuss whether to approve the transfer. The end result was against approval. The responsibility lies with both clubs. Chelsea’s mistake spoiled one of PSG’s plans for the second half. The most disappointing was Ziyech himself, who blew a new opportunity right in front of his eyes. For Ziyech, the alternative is to go to a league such as Turkiye, where the transfer deadline is still left. 

The football transfer market is moving more and more urgently. The K-League is also currently undergoing the winter transfer market (deadline for first player registration). The K-League, which begins in spring and ends in late fall and early winter, currently corresponds to the summer transfer market in Europe. The deadline to register for the first round of this year is March 24.

In order to close the transfer process in the K-League, three major tasks must be completed. The first is to conclude negotiations with the player and, if not a free agent (FA), with the previous team and write a transfer agreement. The following is the procedure for issuing an ITC (International Transfer Certificate) through the FIFA (Transfer Matching System) from the association to which the former team belongs. Lastly, the professional soccer federation standard contract written by clubs and players and other required documents must be submitted to the federation. Only when this is done by the deadline of the transfer market can the player be registered as a member of the new team and play. If it is confirmed on the TMS that the ITC issuance request was made to the other association within the registration period, the actual document submission may pass the registration period.

However, during the corona pandemic, there were special provisions. Only players whose contracts with their clubs were terminated due to corona-related problems were allowed to register for any team regardless of the registration period. The effect of this provision has now expired.

Now, like European football, the K-League is basically strictly following the transfer deadline. In the past, in the K-League, there was a case where the transfer failed because the documents could not be proved. At the time of the 2014 summer transfer market, it was Eder, whom Ulsan promoted. At the time, Ulsan recruited Eder, a Brazilian and Palestinian dual citizen, to the Asian Quarter. On July 22, the recruitment was announced. 

The problem was that Eder had entered Korea through a Brazilian passport. He had to obtain a visa based on a Palestinian passport in order to be recognized as an Asian Quarter. Ultimately, by the July 31 registration deadline, Eder and Ulsan clubs were unable to submit documents proving their Palestinian nationality. The Professional Football Federation has firmly decided not to register players. Eventually, Eder, who failed to join Ulsan, knocked back the K-League as a Brazilian national and played an active role in Daegu, Jeonbuk, Seongnam, and Jeju from 2015 to 2020 under the registered name Edel.  메이저놀이터

At the time, Ulsan tried to seek relief from Eder through the decision of the federation’s board of directors by obtaining understanding through the authoritative interpretation of the International Football Federation (FIFA). However, the federation gave priority to principles. As in the past, it is the position that the principle will be followed in the future unless it is a special FIFA clause. 

If, as in the case of Ziyech, the damage is caused by the administrative incompetence of one club, can they claim compensation? It is said that there are already cases in the K-League where such clauses are written in advance when a transfer agreement between clubs is drawn up, and even a specific compensation plan is inserted. This is the case of clubs that write contracts thoroughly. If there is no such thing, it is difficult to establish the scale of compensation for damage. You can get a damage claim by going to FIFA and filing a complaint. 

The transfer market is a battle to keep an eye on until the very end. Each team in the K-League will also continue to move to maximize their team power until March 24th. If there is a big transfer like Ziyech ahead of the deadline, each club should have enough time to complete the administrative procedures. 

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