Tottenham Hotspur flop cleared to help La Liga relegation fight despite FIFA protests

Giovani Dos Santos

Giovanni Dos Santos will play for RCD Mallorca tonight despite a saga over his availabilty.

La Liga reaches a dramatic conclusion this evening with the Europa League, Champions League and relegation places all yet to have a final designate.

As exciting as the battles at the top of the table may well be there is little doubt where the most excitement lies; at the foot of the La Liga table.

So far nobody has been condemned QPR or Reading style to the second tier of Spanish football so we go into the final game of the season with all three relegation spots yet to be decided; and one of four teams capable of surviving.

The teams involved are no minnows either; all of them have certainly featured in Europe during my life-time.

RCD Mallorca, Celta Vigo, Real Zaragoza and Deportivo La Coruna are the four sides vying for just one position; 17th.

For Mallorca the task is the most difficult. They come into the final day of the season bottom of the table and two points behind Deportivo in 17th; meaning if Depor avoid defeat at the Riazor against Real Sociedad they are down regardless.

Celta and Zaragoza are just the point ahead of them but Mallorca are the only one of the four teams who HAVE to win to have any hope of staying safe.

With that in mind it is pretty important that Mallorca be at full strength for the game against Valladolid at home; considering a relegation to the second tier for the first time since 1997 is at stake.

With that in mind former Spurs playmaker Giovanni Dos Santos would be the one player they will particularly want available considering his 2013 form, and he is; just about.

Because up until very, very late last night it seemed Gio would not feature in the game because of a complaint lodged by the Mexican Football Federation.

Mexico called the former Barcelona player into their squad for the friendly with Nigeria last night but Mallorca challenged the decision; claiming it was not an official FIFA date so therefore they were not obliged to release him.

FIFA however differed and enforced the release of the player who travelled to Houston on Thursday. But in an astonishing twist he was then called back to the Balearic Islands after the Spanish Football League (LFP) said he could play and he arrived back on Spanish soil yesterday.

But as of yesterday evening Mallorca manager Gregorio Manzano had this to say on the matter:

‘’At this time, Gio cannot play with us tomorrow.’’

FIFA had got in touch again, sticking their bureaucratic nose in and saying he must return to international duty for the qualifying matches against Jamaica, Panama and Costa Rica.

But today, finally common sense has prevailed; after a lot of air miles were chalked up.

The LFP have confirmed that Dos Santos will play in Mallorca on Saturday night; before flying out to meet up with El Tricolor in the immediate aftermath.

“Given that the opening match of the Confederations Cup is scheduled for June 15, the regulation will be met.”

Let’s just hope that the relegation battle has as many twists and turns in 90 minutes this evening as the saga that got Dos Santos here in the first place.

image: © Pedrito Guzman

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