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Napoli warn they could sue to stop players joining Africa Cup of Nations
23/12/2021 14:17:00

Napoli lawyer Mattia Grassani confirms on-going legal action against the ‘mutineers’ under Carlo Ancelotti and warns clubs could sue to stop their players participating in the Africa Cup of Nations.

The tournament does seem to be going ahead in Cameroon next month, even though COVID cases are spiking all over the world.

As Cameroon has only circa five per cent of the population vaccinated, there are fears this could turn into a super-spreader event for the continent and the entire football world.

Clubs are increasingly concerned at the idea of letting their players participate in the competition, citing health worries.

“Considering the epidemiological situation, there could be legal action, because this tournament takes away valuable resources from the clubs,” Napoli lawyer Grassani told CalcioNapoli24.

“It is a particular historic moment, so it would be different if we felt 99 per cent confident of the situation. The clubs invested a lot of money for signing players like Victor Osimhen, so if he were to become infected, that’d be tough to deal with.

“The first step would be legal action to prevent the call-up, then if there were concrete elements to sue because the health standards are not the same as in European competitions, then there could be more appeals to gain an exemption for Europe-based players.”

Meanwhile, Grassani also confirmed he is continuing the legal action against former Napoli players Allan, Elseid Hysaj and Nikola Maksimovic, who were at the heart of the ‘mutiny’ in 2019.

The incident occurred in December 2019, just days before Ancelotti was sacked, when players refused to go back into a training retreat following a Champions League win over KRC Genk.

“I made clear the reasoning of the club, which is that there was a genuine unprecedented mutiny in the squad that night, unheard of in Serie A.

“This mutiny could not be allowed to pass without consequences. This is the mission that President Aurelio De Laurentiis assigned to me.”

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