China's football authorities prepare to face Camacho in arbitration

Beijing, July 6 (IANS) Chinese football authorities have been prepared to face sacked national team coach Jose Antonio Camacho in arbitration over a settlement dispute.

The Chinese Football Association (CFA) and the 58-year-old Spaniard failed to reach an agreement over severance and Camacho Friday decided to take the matter to FIFA and the Court of Sport for Arbitration.

Camacho, with more than one year left on his contract, stepped down following a humiliating 1-5 home defeat to a second-string Thailand side June 15.

"I received two emails from Camacho, which claimed that the negotiation will break down if we don't accept their conditions and the matter will be taken to FIFA," CFA's legal advisor Tian Fengchang told Xinhua Saturday.

"We are explicit that the CFA is ready to not only resume talks with Camacho but respect any of their other options," said the lawyer.

Tian said both sides have held two talks since Monday but the situation went into a deadlock as the CFA is not willing to pay what Camachao wants, which is estimated as much as $9 million by sports newspaper Titan Weekly.

A statement sent to Xinhua Friday by Javier Ferrero, who represented Camacho in the talks with the CFA, said that "the CFA failed to fulfill the contract and despite our efforts to find a solution, we still could not reach an agreement."

"So we feel deep regret over the situation and according to relevant articles in the contract, we will seek assistance from world football governing body FIFA and the Court of Arbitration for Sport," added the statement.

As far as Tian is concerned, the CFA had a good reason to fire Camacho.

"Camacho is the one who did not fulfil the terms of the contract," said Tian. "He failed to lead the Chinese national team to good results and bring positive changes to the team."

"The team went backward in terms of competition results and world rankings. The CFA thought Camacho failed to fulfil the obligation set in the contract and thus chose to end his contract," he added.

It came as no surprise that the former Spain and Real Madrid coach had his stay in China cut short as the Chinese men's national team kept sliding downhill under his rein, dropping from world number 71 to a history low 109 in March this year with just seven wins and 11 defeats in 20 games.

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