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Transfers of Thursday, 1 March 2007

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Yaw Preko to play in Vietnam

..but Vietnam Football Federation drags feet on player transfer

Bureaucracy at Vietnam’s football governing body was said to be to blame as a V-League football club had to wait unnecessarily for a player transfer, even though all documents were submitted in order.

Topflight V-league football club Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAGL) completed a transfer for Yaw Preko from Ghana, a former player for Saudi Arabia’s Al Ittihad football club.

HAGL had submitted his registration for competition in the 2007 season to the Vietnam Football Federation (VFF), which is supposed to contact Al Itthad to approve the deal, a process that is routinely done same-day.

Ironically, the VFF said the club had to wait for ‘consideration’ and a decision from FIFA before Preko could play.

An official from HAGL said that he had submitted all required documentation, including labor contract, health certificate, and booklet of competition, for Preko at 1pm February 26, the deadline imposed by the VFF for clubs to register players in the 2007 season.

Under FIFA regulations for registering a foreign footballer, the national federation is to contact the partner federation of the country where the footballer played for in the past, to legitimize and certify the international transfer.

In this case, the VFF is obligated to contact Saudi Arabia’s national football federation to examine Preko’s transfer.

The VFF delayed it for two days till Wednesday afternoon, explaining the VFF could only approve the case after having a decision from FIFA.

An HAGL official was quoted as saying there is no rule to ask his club to wait for FIFA in this case.

“Actually, HAGL and Al Ittihad completed the transfer lawfully and the VFF should have only taken minutes to verify it,” the official said.

Preko is presently training with HAGL and is still awaiting a final decision from the VFF on pivotal upcoming battles for the team.

“We’re upset. We could get stung by the nonsense delay as we face Binh Dinh in the Vietnam Cup quarterfinal match on March 4,” he said.