'Pressured' by 'menace in football' - President speaks out on £16m Rojo deal

Marcos Rojo - Portugal Vs Argentina, 9th February 2011

Sporting Lisbon president has come out to criticise third party ownership in football.

Manchester United's signing of Argentine international Marcos Rojo was certainly a protracted affair.

They eventually tied down a £16 million for the versatile defender from Sporting Lisbon after difficulty with his Work Permit and the furore over the third-party ownership that threatened to extinguish his move.

Rojo was part owned by Sporting and sports management company Doyen Sport. Sporting did not want to sell Rojo, but as Doyen funded a large part of his move to Portugal from Spartak Moscow, in the end they had little choice in the matter.

The Sporting Lisbon president Bruno de Carvalho has now spoken out about the issue, telling the BBC:

"We did not want Rojo to leave. He was an important player for us. The pressure was so big, they [Doyen] started to speak to the clubs and come here to the meetings. The directors thought they were people from the clubs because they were speaking in English although they were Portuguese. They believed it was a person from a club but it was a person from the funds."

Third party ownerships have become very popular in Portugal, Russia and Ukraine - more often than not involving South American imports such as Rojo - or other famous incidents such as Javier Mascherano and Carlos Tevez.

But FIFA ruled to ban them last week, with a schedule of four years set to eradicate the current ones active in Europe.

De Carvalho, for one, is very happy to here this news:

"Fifa understand people all over the world don't want that menace in football. They are almost in every club right now. They are breeding all over the clubs."

In the future these messy situations will finally begin to come to an end. For now however, the deals that saw Rojo arrive at United are here to stay.

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