Liverpool and West Bromwich Albion could be hit with fines from FIFA for refusing to release players for the upcoming African Cup of Nations.
Reds defender Joel Matip and Baggies Allan Nyom were among eight players who pulled out of the Cameroon squad for the tournament, which begins in Gabon on 14 January. The other six players are Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting (Schalke), Guy N’dy Assembe (Nancy), Maxime Poundje (Bordeaux), Andre Onana (Ajax), Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa (Marseille) and Ibrahim Amadou (Lille).
Cameroon have told the players, however, that they are expected to link up with the squad, despite the duo informing them they did not wish to participate, instead choosing to focus on their club duties.
Matip and Nyom could both be punished by FIFA for not going, including potential suspensions. The clubs could also be slapped with fines for failing to release their players for international duty.
Speaking to the BBC, football lawyer David Seligman said: ‘Clubs have to release them and players have to go.
‘The only reason they don’t have to go is if they are injured.
‘FIFA could sanction both the club and the player. The player could be banned from playing domestic games for the duration of the tournament and the club could be fined.
‘The FA would be expected to intervene and they could also face sanction if the player doesn’t go.’
By Steve Osborne @BlizzardSteve75