Man United could face Fiorentina complaint

Manchester United could be the subject of a FIFA investigation into the transfer of 16-year-old Italian defender Michele Fornasier from Serie A side Fiorentina.

Sir Alex Ferguson and Federico Macheda


Sir Alex Ferguson and Federico Macheda, a young recruit from Lazio.

FIFA have confirmed that the Italian club have already made contact ahead of a possible complaint against the Premier League champions and world football's governing body are awaiting documentation from Fiorentina to begin a formal complaint.

Fornasier, who turned 16 in August, was offered a contract by United after impressing while playing for the club in the Milk Cup tournament in Northern Ireland this summer. Italian clubs are unable to sign players until they are 18 and, as such, the Viola were unable to sign up Fornasier prior to United's move.

FIFA said in a statement: "We can confirm that we were contacted by Fiorentina with regard to the potential transfer of the player, Michele Fornasier, to the English club, Manchester United. However, so far no formal investigation was opened since the relevant documentation needs to be completed."

The Red Devils signed Italian striker Federico Macheda, who shot to fame after he scored two vital goals during the Premier League title run in last season, in similar circumstances from Lazio two years ago and the Rome club's president Claudio Lotito subsequently called for a change in regulations.

"We tried in every way to stop Manchester United from taking away our player but the present Italian regulations don't give you any type of defence," said Lotito. "In reality we find ourselves in front of a proper cattle market."

Earlier this week French club La Havre made a complaint against United regarding the signing of 17-year-old midfielder Paul Pogba this summer. The Ligue 2 club claimed United made payments to the parents of the French starlet in order to entice the player to Old Trafford.

However, in a statement United threatened to take legal action against Le Havre if they continued with "unfounded" allegations.

Last week FIFA banned Chelsea from making any signings in the next two transfer windows after the club were found to have induced young midfielder Gael Kakuta to break his contract with RC Lens in 2007. A spate of complaints regarding approaches towards young players has ensued.

*Taken from

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