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Bresciano ban puts World Cup spot in jeopardy

SoccerNews in World Cup 16 Nov 2013

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Australia’s Mark Bresciano is in danger of missing the World Cup in Brazil, due to a four-month ban for an illegal transfer to Al Gharafa.

Bresciano has been fined $1.8 million and faces four months on the sidelines and the prospect of missing next year’s World Cup, unless his appeal is successful.

Qatari club Al Gharafa, who boasted Harry Kewell in their ranks last year, are suspended from all transfer activity for one year.

Al Nasr have been notified of their right to compensation by FIFA, despite a report by Gulf News in April claiming the 33-year-old Bresciano had bought out the remainder of his two-year contract in the UAE.

Bresciano spent one season in UAE’s Arabian Gulf League in 2011-12, scoring 11 goals before making the switch to Al Gharafa.

Al Gharafa have appealed FIFA’s decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

“This is not a unique case, there are many precedents, we as a club are not a part of this case, as the player ended his contract with his former club before joining us,” Al Gharafa club secretary Jassim Al Mansouri said.

“Our next step will be filing an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.”

Hoping to feature at his third successive World Cup, Bresciano could be absent for Australia’s build-up to Brazil, which would leave him severely underdone for the showpiece event.

But despite uncertainty surrounding his future, Bresciano is free to take part in Tuesday’s international friendly against Costa Rica in Sydney – coach Ange Postecoglou’s first game in charge of the Socceroos.

“We will do all we can to assist Marco Bresciano and his representatives in having the judgement swiftly overturned and set aside,” an FFA spokesperson told News Limited.

“The advice from FIFA is that the suspension doesn’t apply to Tuesday night’s match against Costa Rica. Marco is available for selection and will continue his preparations with the squad.”

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