USSF threatens "replacement players" for Feb. qualifier

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by BuffloSoldier, Dec 14, 2004.

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  1. joehooligan0303

    joehooligan0303 Member+

    Dec 16, 2001
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Call it whatever you want. I just think it is sad that money is getting in the way of our countries hope for a birth to the world cup. I didnt realize I was going to get jumped all over for thinking it would be an honor to lace up with my national jersey on my back. But frankly if the Ateam players are going to cry over money then I really dont care if they ever play again. Also, if this keeps up soccer can cancel any gains it has made in the US over the last 50 years. Look what money bickering is doing to a sport that is well established here (hockey).
  2. ColomboZelaschi

    ColomboZelaschi New Member

    Aug 7, 2004
    Devil's Backbone
    Mister Hooligan, is it your belief that money is irrelevant? Should Brasil and France play in the finals for the fun of it? You think BigSoccer is running this site for the love of the game? You think the BS/FSW partnership and the Microsoft banners are for the love of the game? This game is a business plain and simple. It might be more pure to play futbol with your buddies on the shores south of Naples one afternoon in June, but as far as the WC goes, it comes down to Nike versus Addidas. And this reality, however sad but true, is driving this. Would you have the players play for free? If so, then we might all move to the desert and live cooperatively, but I doubt it.
  3. alexdergrosse

    alexdergrosse New Member

    Jun 15, 2001
    Northern VA
    Interesting. I like to read "The demand for arbitration seeks an order requiring the United States Soccer Federation (the "USSF") to immediately permit Coach Bruce Arena to invite the players, who are all members of the United States National Soccer Team, to participate in the current training camp and to play in the World Cup qualifying game at Trinidad & Tobago on February 9, 2005. "

    But, this is first a request to go to arbitration, then a request to let the players train.

    Wonder if there are any strings attached to this arbitration request; i.e., is going to arbitration on this point mean going to arbitration on the entire dispute?
  4. JG

    JG Member+

    Jun 27, 1999
    No, it's just an attempt to get the USSF's lockout and use of replacement players declared illegal and stopped. Has nothing to do with arbitrating the actual CBA as far as I can tell.
  5. Beau Dure

    Beau Dure Member+

    May 31, 2000
    Vienna, VA
  6. ColomboZelaschi

    ColomboZelaschi New Member

    Aug 7, 2004
    Devil's Backbone
    According to the USSF Bylaws, this is where we are.
    Bylaw 707. LITIGATION
    Section 1. No Organization Member, official, league, club, team, player, coach, administrator or referee may invoke the aid of the courts in the United States or of a State without first exhausting all available remedies within the appropriate soccer organization, and as provided within the Federation. This bylaw does not apply to the commencement of an arbitration proceeding under these bylaws or the USOC Constitution and Bylaws or the enforcement of a decision rendered in such a proceeding.
    Section 2. For a violation of this bylaw, the offending party shall be subject to suspension and fines, and shall be liable to the Federation for all expenses incurred by the Federation and its officers in defending each court action, including but not limited to the following:
    (1) court costs.
    (2) attorney’s fees.
    (3) reasonable compensation for time spent by Federation officials and employees in responding to and defending against allegations in the action, including responses to discovery and court appearances.
    (4) travel expenses.
    (5) expenses for holding special National Council meetings necessitated by the court action.
  7. Beau Dure

    Beau Dure Member+

    May 31, 2000
    Vienna, VA
    OK, then.

    Previous point still correct.

  8. I'm sorry to hear those FMCS horror stories. My experience has been much better.

    Top LA-area mediators bring in $10K; one in particular gets a standard $15K, lives in Hawaii and flies to LA for the day to resolve your dispute, then back home at night.

    However, most mediators, especially former judges and current practicing attorneys, have LITTLE OR NO collective-bargaining experience. To be empaneled as a labor mediator with FMCS you need to demonstrate substantial experience as an advocate (negotiator) or arbitrator in a c.b. environment. I would be extremely surprised if such a panelist were selected for the soccer dispute and walked out at 5 on the eve of the deadline to get home for dinner.

    Anyway, what I was hoping was that by committing to a formal mediation process, the sides were trusting each other to return the first stringers to camp, play (and win) the T&T match during negotiations, and get something finalized in between, even if it comes down to pre-Mexico dramatics.

    I just really don't want the US to lose these three points.

    The comparison to baseball is somewhat inapposite because this would not threaten the World Cup, just one team's participation in it.

    And there were so many more millions of dollars at stake in the baseball dispute in 1994. Here, Roger Clemens' 2005 salary alone could easily bridge the gap several times over.

    Though sometimes, the low-dollar cases are the toughest ones to settle, as I'm sure the lawyers and mediators on this board will agree!
  9. ColomboZelaschi

    ColomboZelaschi New Member

    Aug 7, 2004
    Devil's Backbone
    So, is it true then, that the individual players within the PA have fulfilled their USSF member obligations and are now free to roam the Federal and State courts at their collective or individual risk for relief? Isn't this exactly what Soccer House was trying to pre-empt with the arbitration line, regardless of the merits or lack of merits depending on your POV? My understanding is, so long as arbitration, as it relates to the CBA, was on the table, the players were prevented by 706 and 707 to go outside the Fed as individual members without breaking from the accord of the Bylaws they are bound to. That is until they were locked out and replaced, which negates the CBA, the stale one I mean. Right? Is this your understanding? If so, the Fed has risked far more than I orginally understood. And if so, is this not a sign that the PA slid through the back door and is preparing to go the full distance with their demands in a labor friendly venue, i.e. downtown Detroit?
  10. Beau Dure

    Beau Dure Member+

    May 31, 2000
    Vienna, VA
    Previous point was this:

    That point is correct. The "arbitration" refers only to the strikeout (I'm not taking sides on what it is), not the CBA.
  11. Can anyone explain why the Fed would make any proposal which includes a promise not to strike though May 2006? What does that do, other than hand the players overwhelming leverage on the eve of Germany? Or does the Fed make all its money on the (home) qualifiers and not so much in Germany, therefore making the actual finals less lucrative for the Fed??
  12. ColomboZelaschi

    ColomboZelaschi New Member

    Aug 7, 2004
    Devil's Backbone
    Understood. My question is; are the players moving outside of the Fed's Bylaws as I referenced earlier? As I understand, they are bound to a point to remain within "the family." Have we reached the end of their obligations as individual "family" members? In other words, regardless of the CBA, are they free to roam the State and Federal courts, individually or collectively, of their choosing because of the lockout? Or is that what the arbitrator is going to decide?
  13. Beau Dure

    Beau Dure Member+

    May 31, 2000
    Vienna, VA
    The player action is based on the Ted Stevens Act, which I sadly have not memorized but probably should if this keeps up. (Or for the next USOC scandal -- those are always amusing. Anyone want to talk about why Congress' reform effort is doomed?)
  14. ThreeApples

    ThreeApples Member+

    Jul 28, 1999
    Smurf Village
    San Jose Earthquakes
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The finals are lucrative for the Fed, but the Fed gets World Cup money regardless of how well the team does in the finals. If the team strikes on June 1, 2006, the Fed sends a replacement team and still gets the money given to all teams knocked out in the first round. Even with the real team, it's tough to get past the first round, so there might be no difference in revenue for the Fed if they send the real team or replacements. All the Fed loses if the team strikes is whatever might have been earned by advancing to the knockout stages, but it can't count on that money anyway. Meanwhile the players would have difficulty choosing to strike on the eve of the pinnacle of their careers and right when they have a chance of getting a 6-figure bonus.
  15. ColomboZelaschi

    ColomboZelaschi New Member

    Aug 7, 2004
    Devil's Backbone
    I am not a lawyer, but a friend told me that the Stevens Act is also a way to undress your opponent's finances. I am pretty sure the USSF will have to submit their balance sheets in this hearing. If the PA wants to air the Fed's financials, which probably will not help the Fed, then they may have found the way. Do you know anything about this part of the Act?
  16. Saeyddthe

    Saeyddthe Member

    Sep 5, 2003
    St. Looney ^the CB&J
    Unfortunately for both, we may not be there at all... making it a moot point.
  17. Okay, that makes sense. Plus, getting past the first round would "cost" the Fed in terms of performance bonus, and the Fed apparently would be willing to forego whatever secondary benefits come to the sport based on WC success (defined I suppose as matching or exceeding the 2002 result).

    I'm having trouble continuing to support the Fed here. It just seems way too willing to jeopardize the long-term success of the sport in order to secure a short-term bargaining advantage. (But the same can be said of the PA also.)

    Once again, here I am on a Friday afternoon hoping that watching English soccer, coachng a youth game, and playing a pickup game will take my mind off of this crap, and when I return on Monday this will be like a bad dream.

    But if I hear one word about the %()^!@^&*($)% Sweden-S.Korea match tomorrow I'm going to scream!
  18. billf

    billf Member+

    May 22, 2001
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The USSF took in about 1 million from each of the three first round games in Korea.
  19. ColomboZelaschi

    ColomboZelaschi New Member

    Aug 7, 2004
    Devil's Backbone
    Here is the Act Mister Dure refers to. Would one of the lawyer types chime in on what is about to go down. Is the Fed going to have to disclose their financials? If so, what will stop them from becoming public?

    (As it Relates to Permission for Foreign Travel)
    §220525. Granting sanctions for amateur athletic competitions
    (a) PROMPT REVIEW AND DECISION.—For the sport that it governs, a national governing body promptly shall-

    (1) review a request by an amateur sports organization or person for a sanction to hold an international amateur athletic competition in the United States or to sponsor United States amateur athletes to compete in international amateur athletic competition outside the United States; and

    (2) grant the sanction if—

    (A) the national governing body does not decide by clear and convincing evidence that holding or sponsoring an international amateur athletic competition would be detrimental to the best interest of the sport; and
    (B) the requirements of subsection (b) of this section are met
    (b) REQUIREMENTS.—An amateur sports organization or person may be granted a sanction under this section only if the organization or person meets the following requirements—

    (1) The organization or person must pay the national governing body any required sanctioning fee, if the fee is reasonable and nondiscriminatory.

    (2) For a sanction to hold an international amateur athletic competition in the United States, the organization or person must—
    (A) submit to the national governing body an audited or notarized financial report of similar events, if any, conducted by the organization or person; and
    (B) demonstrate that the requirements of paragraph (4) of this subsection have been met.

    (3) For a sanction to sponsor United States amateur athletes to compete in international amateur athletic competition outside the United States, the organization or person must—
    (A) submit a report of the most recent trip to a foreign country, if any, that the organization or person sponsored for the purpose of having United States amateur athletes compete in international amateur athletic competition; and
    (B) submit a letter from the appropriate entity that will hold the international amateur athletic competition certifying that the requirements of paragraph

    (4) of this subsection have been met.
    (4) The requirements referred to in paragraphs (2) and (3) of this subsection are that—
    (A) appropriate measures have been taken to protect the amateur status of athletes who will take part in the competition and to protect their eligibility to compete in amateur athletic competition;
    (B) appropriate provision has been made for validation of any records established during the competition;
    (C) due regard has been given to any international amateur athletic requirements specifically applicable to the competition;
    (D) the competition will be conducted by qualified officials;
    (E) proper medical supervision will be provided for athletes who will participate in the competition; and
    (F) proper safety precautions have been taken to protect the personal welfare of the athletics and spectators at the competition.

    I hereby certify that by my signature below, I have read and understand the attached conditions in the Ted Stevens Olympic
    and Amateur Sports Act which will be met during our foreign travel.
    Signature of Team Manager/Coach
  20. Beau Dure

    Beau Dure Member+

    May 31, 2000
    Vienna, VA
    Dude, Levinstein has the balance sheets. He sent them to me. He just has a few issues with them.

    In any case, this may be moot for now. Check the news.
  21. ColomboZelaschi

    ColomboZelaschi New Member

    Aug 7, 2004
    Devil's Backbone
    I will see you in Carson!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  22. SoulflyTribeFC

    SoulflyTribeFC New Member

    Mar 24, 2002
    This endless thread can now finally lay to rest.

    En el nombre del padre, del hijo, del espirituo santo. Amen.

    May you rest in peace.
  23. superdave

    superdave Member+

    Jul 14, 1999
    VB, VA
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    All the Fed risks are bonus payments for advancing. They get the big money just for qualifying.
  24. I. Tristeza

    I. Tristeza Member

    Oct 7, 2004
    San Antonio, Texas
    I second Soulfly. Lock this thread.

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