Leicester City’s deal for Sporting Lisbon midfielder Adrien Silva remains in question after papers arrived 14 seconds late.
But, in a bizarre development, it has emerged that the documentation confirming the deal between Leicester and Sporting for the £22m move arrived with the Football Association 14 seconds after their midnight deadline had passed.
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The FA immediately forwarded the deal to FIFA’s Transfer Matching System, which was rejected by the world governing body because the deadline had passed.
Leicester was frustrated in the delays in transfer papers reaching them but that they were completed and signed within minutes upon arrival.
Leicester officials are confident the papers were sent before the midnight deadline – a one-hour extension having been granted by FIFA for the international transfer.
But the Transfer Matching System (TMS) – which links clubs with the FA, other governing bodies, and FIFA, show the documents were late in arriving.
FIFA said on Wednesday: “We can confirm that FIFA has been contacted by The Football Association in connection with the registration of the player Adrien Silva and the club Leicester City. FIFA has replied accordingly providing a reference to applicable regulations.”
The FA is now working with Leicester to try to resolve the situation, attempting to persuade FIFA that the deal should be allowed to stand.
However, according to reports in Portugal, Sporting president Bruno de Carvalho believes the actual transfer is complete and the missed deadline means Leicester will have to wait until January to register Silva.
He is reported as saying: “I would like people to realize that FIFA has not ruled against the transfer, but against registration. The transfer is done, what is at stake is the registration and I hope you can enroll. Adrien was exemplary. Leicester needs the player a lot and I hope they find a solution.”