Aurelio De Laurentiis, 72, president of Naples. The federal prosecutor had asked him for an 11-month suspension but the judge did not find any fault on the part of his club
by Paolo Franci
Added value free all. Like in the old backyard game. There is no guilty club, no responsible club. No fines and not even a day of inhibition. The sports bar’s 59 executives and 11 clubs have been acquitted in the fictitious capital gains case. So, here comes the big sigh of relief for Napoli and Juve. And then for Genoa, Sampdoria, Empoli, Parma, Pisa, Pro Vercelli, Pescara and the two canceled from the radar due to bankruptcy, Chievo Verona and Novara. Why did it all end in a soap bubble? We will have to wait to know the reasons for the conviction, but what matters are these few lines which acquit the clubs and the leaders. The demands of Giuseppe Chinè, head of federal 007, therefore found themselves against a wall at three hundred an hour. Among these, a year of disqualification for Andrea Agnelli and 11 months and 5 days for Napoli number one Aurelio De Laurentiis stood out.
“You see, there is no precise value of a player. It depends on the degree of ‘stupid’ of the president who buys him…”, told us some time ago a well-known prosecutor, underlining how the cost of a champ or half a sock is never – ever – quantifiable. This is why, previous sports trials for the same charge have ended in a soap bubble or more. Like in 2008, when Inter and Milan ended up paying a fine of 90 thousand euros. Of course, there was the Chievo affair in 2018 where, faced with a request for 15 penalty points, the Campedelli club collected three. But between this story and this one, there is a huge difference, because there were interceptions and the players moved with bonuses were hardly ever used and there were no economic agreement with the club. Crumble in an embarrassing way the adversarial castle built by the prosecution (will he appeal?) This was precisely the model put in place to support it. And that amounts to using the Transfermarkt site, a very reliable and serious German reference portal on the value of footballers, but not to the point of becoming a legal or scientific factor in determining the price of an athlete.
And there was also former Gianluca Mancini – now in Rome – at the center of a 2015 affair with Perugia and Fiorentina as protagonists. Mancini was sold by Fiorentina to the Umbrian club for free with the guarantee of having 50% of the cost at the time of the sale. Perugia turns him to Atalanta for 300 thousand euros. Fiorentina are not there, argue that Mancini is worth 1.5 million and appeal claiming that the agreement between the Umbrians and the region of Bergamo is in some way a ‘simulation’. Sports dresses would, however, prove Perugia right, writing: “These prices, being part of a free market negotiation, are not anchored to pre-ordained or predetermined normative valuation factors. They lack uniform and objective criteria for evaluating the real value of the players: there are no certain reference parameters or unanimously shared on the transfer value objective”.