20 000 reasons

In June 2020 Norwegian player agent Atta Aneke paid David Datro Fofana’s mother 20 000 euro, according to a voice message. Fofana later signed for Molde FK for free. In their submission to CAS, Molde accuses Abidjan City of ‘extortion’.

By Lars Johnsen

In Lausanne, a small town in the French-speaking Swiss canton of Vaud, some 60-plus kilometres north-east of Geneva and beautifully located on Lac Léman, the early-morning June sun was stinging in the eyes of two groups of people heading into the offices of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). One group was Abidjan City, represented by club president Marco Taddei Né and their Marseille-based French lawyer François-Luc Ponthieu.

The other group, arriving in a black Tesla ten minutes before the Ivorians, was a delegation from the Norwegian club Molde FK, including club secretary Snorre Strand, a Swiss lawyer and an interpreter, and not least, David Datro Fofana himself, who is the centrepiece of the case.

After filing the case with CAS in September 2022, it was finally time for the hearing.

“At last. It has been going on for three years now. We look forward to presenting our case,” Abidjan City president Marco Taddei Né said when entering the CAS building as the Swiss clocks were approaching 09:30.

Molde FK club secretary Snorre Strand declined to comment, as his posse made their way into the CAS premises.

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