Bastian Schweinsteiger should file a complaint against his treatment at Manchester United and “seek a penalty” for Jose Mourinho, according to a leading figure at FIFPro.
Schweinsteiger has found himself marginalised at Old Trafford only one year after his €9million move to England from Bayern Munich, with reports suggesting he has been told to train with the reserves.
And Dejan Stefanovic – board member at world players’ union FIFPro – believes the World Cup winner has justifiable cause to take action against the club and manager Mourinho.
“It’s clear bullying,” he told BBC World Service Sport. “If this would have happened in Slovenia, we would have indicted Jose Mourinho and asked for the highest penalty possible because he’s setting a bad example.
“This is clearly meant to discourage Bastian. Unfortunately, a lot of our fans accept that, because he’s idolised and he’s getting a lot of money, he can be treated differently. They do not perceive our rights as equal to their rights just because we earn a lot of money and that’s not right.
“He should turn to the PFA and he should file a complaint and I would also seek a penalty for Mourinho.”
Stefanovic even suggested the opening of formal legal proceedings.
“I would take it to the ordinary court,” he added. “In our case, the penal code is quite clear. If there is bullying and harassment, there’s a prison sanction, a maximum of three years in prison.
“[This is] in Slovenia and in most countries in Europe, but nobody applies that [to football]. Usually, in our case, it’s enough for us to call the club and just threaten but nobody seems to have done it yet in England.”