- Sofapaka president Elly Kalekwa has revealed that they will abide by Fifa’s decision to allow its former striker John Avire to play for the Egyptian side FC Tanta Sports Club as the two clubs continue negotiating the player’s transfer fee.
Kalekwa rubbished the Sh1 million transfer fee offer from FC Tanta, saying Sofapaka spent so much on developing Avire to the player he is today. He has said the club will pursue the matter until Sofapaka gets money from the sale of the youthful striker.
“We spent a lot of money to groom Avire to the player he is today and we must just get value for money for his release otherwise we are prepared to pursue the case to the highest court. Avire is a gifted striker. With proper guidance, he has the chance to grow into a world-class striker,” Kalekwa said.
He warned that the cost could rise to Sh10 million value on the striker should the case drag in the courts but the minimum amount the club is willing to accept from Tanta is Sh4 million.
“We are being soft on them (Tanta Sports Club) because we are on the negotiating table and we have also considered the player’s plight because he needs to continue playing at a higher level to grow. However, that will change should they decided to play hardball. Should we win the case at the Court of Arbitration for Sports Tribunal, we will dictate to them what they should pay,” he said.
In August last year just after the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations finals in Egypt, Avire controversially signed for the Egyptian FC Tanta, prompting Sofapaka, through FKF, to report the club to Fifa for player tapping.
FKF invalidated Avire transfer denying him International Transfer Certificate but a letter from Fifa Player Status Committee confirming that indeed Tanta Sports Club had been handed a provisional International Transfer Certificate.
“The Egyptian Federation is authorized to provisionally register the player John Avire who is affiliated to Club Tanta with immediate effect,” part of the letter from Zurich reads.