Chelsea Forward David Datro Fofana Faces Federal Supreme Court Hearing Over Transfer Dispute

Abidjan City FC Presses Charges Alleging Player “Stolen” by Molde FK Before Stamford Bridge Move

Chelsea forward David Datro Fofana finds himself embroiled in a legal battle as he becomes the subject of a Federal Supreme Court hearing concerning his transfer to Molde FK in 2021.

Fofana, aged 21, currently on loan at Burnley, embarked on a short-term stint with Vincent Kompany’s side in January after being recalled from Union Berlin. Despite making only four appearances for Chelsea’s senior team since his transfer from Molde in January 2023, Fofana has showcased promising form at Burnley, tallying four goals in eight games.

However, Fofana’s initial club, Abidjan City FC, alleges that he was “stolen” by Molde prior to his move to Stamford Bridge. The Ivorian’s former club was unsuccessful in their initial case against Fofana and Molde at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), prompting them to escalate the matter to the Federal Supreme Court.

President of Abidjan City, Marco Ne, expressed the club’s stance, emphasizing the pursuit of justice to prevent exploitation of African football talents. Ne asserted, “We just want justice. Without it, it means big clubs can come and take our players. This is dangerous for African football, not just for me.”

Fofana’s acquisition by Molde on a free transfer in 2021 is contested by Abidjan City, who assert the existence of a contractual agreement entitling them to a transfer fee. Ne revealed that signatures on a purported five-year deal are under scrutiny, hinting at potential legal ramifications regarding Fofana’s contract status.

The dispute intensifies as Abidjan City seeks restitution, reportedly aiming for 20% of the €12 million garnered by Molde from Fofana’s subsequent sale to Chelsea. Ne underscored the club’s longstanding association with Fofana, citing his developmental journey within their ranks since the age of 14 and subsequent contractual commitments.

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As legal proceedings unfold, Fofana’s future remains uncertain amidst a backdrop of contractual complexities and financial claims, underscoring the intricate nature of player transfers within the global football landscape.

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