Kenya league leaders AFC Leopards threaten legal action against Tanzania's Simba for 'poaching' defender Ochieng

Club official says no negotiations took place between the two sides and are investigating the matter with view of taking legal action in case of contract infringement
Kenya Premier League (KPL) leaders AFC Leopards say they are not aware of any deal involving defender Pascal Ochieng and Tanzania giants Simba Sports Club and have threatened legal action “in case of contract infringement.”

In a statement posted in the club’s official website, secretary general Winston Kitui revealed that no negotiations had happened between the two clubs in regards to the defender’s switch to the Tanzanian outfit.

Kitui said the club is investigating the authenticity of the matter with the view of taking legal action in case of contract infringement.

“We have a valid contract with Ochieng and the player cannot purport to negotiate or enter into contract with another club without following the laid down procedure,” he said.

“FIFA statutes on player transfer are very clear that no club can open talks, leave alone sign a contract with a player, without express authority of the owning club and should only happen within the official transfer window.”

Last year, left back Collins Kisuya got in trouble with Belgian club Germinal Beerchot after violating his contract with Leopards and the matter is still awaiting determination at FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber after the team filed a complaint.

Ochieng joined Leopards during the June mid-season transfer window from Rangers FC on a six month contract. His presence in the team has however, not been felt as he has been on and off the training grounds sometimes without permission.

Leopards Dutch tactician Jan Koops last week told that he did not know the whereabouts of the defender, who doubles as the vice-captain of national team Harambee Stars. Interestingly, Ochieng has been lined up to play AFC Leopards in his debut when the two sides clash in a friendly match next week.