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The Romanian professional footballers association AFAN organized a successful demonstration last weekend. Many players from the country's first and second division participated in the fight for more respect from the League and the Federation.

 

At an extraordinary meeting on November 8th, the AFAN and players’ representatives of all clubs in the First League decided to organize a protest amongst all professional footballers in their league for two reasons:

  • The National Dispute Resolution Chamber (NDRC) of the Romanian Football League operates with a delay that is too long: it takes approximately two to five months before a decision is issued and communicated
  • The NDRC of the Romanian Football Federation does not respect the Football Regulations regarding sanctions to be laid on clubs for not paying the players. Until this date, there has not been a club in Romania that, due to nonpayment, has been sanctioned with a points deduction.

 

Last weekend, from 18 to 21 November, the footballers showed banners on the pitch before the games began and played with a white armband . The banners displayed the message ‘LPF, FRF, RESPECTATI-NE!’: ‘League, Federation, Respect Us!’

 

The banners and white armbands could be seen at seven out of nine matches in the First League. Players from one team from the Second League showed their solidarity with the players from the First League and also wore white armbands.

 

The footballers encountered many difficulties with their protest, due to the pressure that was put on them by some coaches, club owners, and match observers. The match observers even threatened to sanction the players’ team with a 3-0 defeat if they would continue their protest. Some of the teams succumbed to the pressure and withdrew from participating in the protest. But most of the players ignored the threats and entered the pitch wearing the white armbands and displaying the banner.

 

The AFAN is satisfied with the protest, but the Romanian players’ association is now waiting if both the League and the Federation will react. If these two parties do not solve the aforementioned problems, AFAN and the Romanian players will be contemplating new protest actions.