Dundee United have lost their appeal against a compensation fee demanded by Argentine club Velez Sarsfield for striker Damian Casalinuovo. The Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled that the Tannadice club must pay more than £200,000 for their former player, who signed in 2009. Casalinuovo had insisted he was a free agent when he arrived at United. But Sarsfield claimed compensation for development and the Tangerines have been told to pay £163,000 plus interest. A club statement read: “Dundee United note with disappointment the decision of Cas to only partially uphold our appeal and award 195,000 euros in respect of training compensation to Velez Sarsfield in respect of Damian Casalinouvo. “We are encouraged that the original claim has been reduced and will now consider the decision fully before making any further comment.” A Fifa tribunal had previously reduced the initial claim of £333,000, but United have failed in a further appeal against the governing body’s decision to the court in Lausanne, after a three-month wait. Casalinouvo only played 25 league games for United before moving to Hamilton Academical and then Raith Rovers. The 26-year-old was forced to retire with a back problem in summer 2012 and has become an accountant back in his native Argentina.
Dundee United will have their day in court as they aim to avoid paying a pile of Euros for former player Damian Casalinuovo. The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) will meet in Lausanne, Switzerland on Thursday to decide the Tangerines’ fate. A FIFA tribunal initially ruled that they should pay 400,000 Euros to Argentinian club Velez Sarsfield, whom Casalinuovo was with before moving to Scotland in 2009. That figure was subsequently reduced by a second tribunal to 230,000 Euros just under £200,000. However, the Tannadice team are contesting that decision, too, arguing that he was a free agent. The legal path has now led them to the CAS. United chairman Stephen Thompson confirmed: “There is a hearing in Lausanne on Thursday regarding Damian Casalinuovo. This is a big deal for us but we believe we have a strong case. It has taken a lot of time and money to get to this stage. “The whole thing has been a nightmare and we’re just hoping for a favourable verdict. Damian himself has said he doesn’t believe Sarsfield should be due anything because they were the ones who released him years ago.” Casalinuovo, who has now retired from the game because of injury, was as surprised as anyone to learn of Sarsfield’s cash claim. He has met United’s lawyers and vowed to help his old club all he can in their bid to get a CAS ruling in their favour. “I hope United don’t have to pay anything. Sarsfield released me from my contract there and after that I signed for United,” he said. “I was a free agent, they released me and when I left they didn’t say they would look for a fee in the future.” It is understood that, even before a word has been uttered in the Swiss courtroom, the matter has cost the Tangerines somewhere in the region of £75,000 in legal fees and other costs. Buenos Aires-born frontman Casalinuovo (26) played just 25 times for United, scoring seven goals, before going on to play for both Hamilton Accies and Raith Rovers.
Another week, another new Audi. Two new Audis, in fact. The German car maker has announced a couple more additions to its Q line up of SUVs. The Q4 is a coupe-SUV hybrid that will go up against the BMW X4 and Mercedes GLC Coupe. As its name suggests, it’ll be positioned between the compact Q3 and bigger Q5. At the other end of the scale is the Q8, which will go head to head against the Range Rover. It’s lower and sleeker than the Q7 Audi is also producing. In concept form, it sat only four people, although it seems likely the production version will be a five seater. There’s a 630 litre boot as well. Eagle eyed Audi followers will notice the only SUV slots left to fill are the Q1 and Q6. Watch this space...
Dundee United's Argentinian striker Damian Casalinuovo is set to miss at least two games after damaging a hamstring in the Scottish Cup quarter-final draw with Rangers. Casalinuovo is out of Saturday's SPL trip to Aberdeen and the cup replay a week tomorrow. "Damian has injured his hamstring, so will definitely be out of the Aberdeen game," confirmed boss Peter Houston. "We're still trying to determine whether it's a pull or a tear, but the likelihood is that he'll be out for two weeks at least. "Damian is still only 21 and been doing really well considering he's come here from a foreign country. "But we've got options up front. "Andis Shala is confident and scoring goals like he did at Ibrox, Francisco Sandaza is building his fitness up and we've got Kevin Smith back from his loan spell at Raith Rovers." Houston was delighted with United's efforts against Rangers. "I think we can genuinely take a lot of positives from our play at Ibrox," he said. "I thought the players performed well against a very good side, but now the replay is put on the back-burner until we've got this weekend out of the way." United and Rangers have agreed reduced admission prices for the replay, to be shown live on Sky. Tickets for the game go on sale today, priced £16 adults, £6 students/over-60s and £4 for under-18s. United will be selling briefs for the Rangers end as well as to their own fans.
Dundee United face an anxious wait to discover their fate after the Damian Casalinuovo case was heard in Switzerland. Tangerines chairman Stephen Thompson was at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne on Thursday, along with club lawyer Rod McKenzie. The United delegation went to the CAS to argue against a FIFA tribunal ruling that they should pay Argentinian club Velez Sarsfield 230,000 euros (just under £200,000) in compensation for Casalinuovo. They believe the Buenos Aires-born striker was freed by his former team in his homeland before going on to join United in 2009. After helping to put the Tannadice club’s case to the CAS panel, Thompson said: “It was a fair and full hearing but there could be weeks of deliberations before we hear what they have decided.” Meanwhile, United will have Gavin Gunning available for their home Premiership match against Celtic a week on Saturday. The Irishman is suspended for the league visit of St Johnstone to Tannadice on Saturday and the Scottish Communities League Cup clash at Dumbarton on Wednesday after being sent off against Hibs on Saturday.
Raith Rovers boss John McGlynn has hailed his very own ''Keegan and Toshack'' after the Fifers put some breathing space between themselves and the foot of Division One. Inspired by the strike partnership of John Baird and Brian Graham, the Stark's Park outfit romped to a 5-0 victory over Morton on Saturday. The result represented Rovers' biggest league win since 2001 and moved McGlynn's men five points clear of bottom club Queen of the South. Diminutive Baird claimed a goal and an assist, while the towering figure of Graham netted twice. McGlynn was full of praise for the duo, saying: ''When they are on song they are two very, very good players. ''It's that mix you get with a taller and a smaller player your Keegan and Toshack. When they get it right they can be so hard to play against. ''Naturally we're delighted with that, and we can still bring on Jamie Walker who has pace, and the quality of Damian Casalinuovo. So we have good options.''
Three Dundee United players who contributed to the club's successful Scottish Cup campaign have been denied winners' medals by the SFA. Darren Dods, Paul Dixon and Damian Casalinuovo may not have featured on the big day but they did play significant roles in the campaign to get to Hampden. Casalinuovo scored the goal albeit a controversial handball effort that set United on the road to glory, netting the opener against Partick Thistle on January 9. Dixon also featured against Thistle and started the semi-final against Raith Rovers on April 11 before limping off injured. The hardest done by would appear to be Dods, who was at the heart of the Tangerines' defence against St Johnstone in the last 16, the first quarter-final against Rangers and the replay, as well as the semi against Rovers. Injury robbed Dods and Dixon of their chance against Ross County, while Casalinuovo was fit but did not make manager Peter Houston's final squad. Tannadice chairman Stephen Thompson, in recognition of the part played by Dods, Dixon and Casalinuovo in bringing silverware to the club, contacted the SFA to ask if they could obtain medals for the trio. However, the governing body refused his request and the three men will stay empty-handed. Thompson said, "I don't really know why that is but those are their rules. "We were willing to pay for them but apparently you can't even do that." He added, "It is a shame for the players involved because the likes of Paul, Damian and Darren played a big part in getting the team to Hampden."Fitness boostDixon has given United a boost by stepping up his training regime. The former Dundee full-back has had a broken foot but started running over the weekend and expects to be fully fit for the start of pre-season. Dixon said, "I went out for a run over the weekend and although it was a bit sore I expected that. "I could probably kick a ball again soon but there is no point taking risks." He added, "I have had six weeks of doing nothing so I will need to build up my fitness again but I will be there and ready to go when pre-season starts." Meanwhile, United defender Mihael Kovacevic is to have an operation on his injured knee later this month. He tore his cruciate ligament last week while training with his father during a trip home to Switzerland. Kovacevic will report back to Tannadice next week to see the club's medical staff before going under the surgeon's knife on June 21.Plans for KovacevicHouston said, "He is going to see the same surgeon who did Jon Daly's knee operation so hopefully he will be able to get him back playing in the same kind of timescale." The player's contract expires in January but talks over his future will take place soon. Houston said, "Mihael is a Scottish Cup winner who made a big contribution to the season we have just had. "He is an important player and we will be doing everything to get him fit again so he can rejoin the squad." Houston is in the market for defensive cover and is understood to be interested, along with Motherwell and Watford, in Queen's Park left-back Barry Douglas. Douglas is on holiday and will consider where his future lies on his return later this week. The Tangerines look set to travel to Humberside to play Hull City at the KC Stadium on Saturday, July 31. Hull have just dropped down to the English Championship from the Premiership but would still provide a stern test for the Tannadice men in a match that is still to be confirmed. The previous weekend, United are expected to be in Northern Ireland for a friendly against Glentoran on July 24.
Damian Casalinuovo, a player who represented Dundee United just 25 times, could end up costing the Tannadice club nearly 10,000 times that amount in euros compensation, it has emerged. World football governing body Fifa has ordered United to pay 230,000 euros to Platense, the Argentinian club he was signed from in 2009. The figure has been reduced from 400,000 euros by a Fifa tribunal. United are still challenging the compensation, however, and will now take the matter to the court of arbitration in sport. It has always been the Tangerines’ understanding that no transfer fee was due, but Platense insist otherwise. United chairman Stephen Thompson said: “It’s been all the way through Fifa and we’ve now appealed to the court of arbitration for sport.” The striker has also played for Raith Rovers and Hamilton Accies.
Peter Houston is set to unleash a revitalised Prince Buaben on Raith Rovers this weekend. The United boss gave Buaben a break against St Johnstone on Monday night -- leaving him on the bench until the last 15 minutes. He reckons the benefits of that will be seen on Sunday. "Prince had been suffering from an in-growing toe-nail but that was fixed ahead of the Saints," said Houston. "However, he'd had a trying time of it with his father dying. "And having seen the good being left out of the Motherwell game had done Morgaro Gomis, I decided it would be good to give Prince a rest. "I didn't want to use him at all at McDiarmid Park but Danny Swanson was getting tired so we put him on for the last wee while. "He looked full of energy and was good to see because we are short of central midfield options with Davie Robertson and Scott Robertson being injured." Five United players -- Paul Dixon, Dusan Pernis, Danny Swanson, Darren Dods and David Goodwillie -- go into Sunday knowing that if they are booked and the Tangerines progress they'll miss the final. Only two Rovers players -- Grant Murray and Allan Walker -- are in the same boat.Casalinuovo eagerMeanwhile, Damian Casalinuovo has revealed that he heard all about Hampden while growing up in Argentina. Now the Dundee United striker is dreaming of playing at the venue where Diego Maradona scored his first international goal and made his managerial bow with the Argentinian national side. Maradona lit up the friendly with Scotland back in 1979 and our national stadium's place in Argentine football folklore was cemented when 16 months ago he took charge of the current crop of players for the first time. Casalinuovo revealed treading the Hampden turf on Sunday would fulfil a lifelong ambition. "Everyone in Argentina was watching when Maradona had his first game in charge against Scotland," he said. "It is also where he scored his first goal for the national team so it is a special place in the history of Argentinian football. "Back home everyone knows the name of Hampden and that it is a great stadium. "For me to play in the same place as Maradona scored would be amazing."
Damian Casalinuovo reckons the Raith Rovers fans are the warmest he's ever encountered -- but he's still hoping for the chance to kill off their Active Nation Scottish Cup dream. Casalinuovo is facing at least a fortnight out after damaging a hamstring against Rangers. But he's praying his team-mates can win next week's quarter-final replay and set up a clash with first division Rovers, where he spent a month on loan earlier this season, as he'd love to feature in a semi against Raith. "It looks like being a couple of weeks before I can play again. "I felt the hamstring pull and now it is really tight. "This is disappointing, especially when I wasn't meant to be playing at Ibrox. "I only started because David Goodwillie had taken ill the night before and then to get hurt in the first minutes was not nice. "But I am targeting the semi-final and hoping the boys can get through to face Raith Rovers. "Raith are a very good club with fantastic supporters. "We were getting on the bus to go to Glasgow on Saturday as the Rovers fans were heading up the road to Dens Park. "Although I only played three games for them they recognised me and were shouting to me. "They were all very kind and very friendly. "In one way I'd rather we would be facing someone else in the semis if we get there. "But I won't hesitate to help beat them, even though I am so pleased for Raith to have got to the semi-final. "The guys there play with such heart and work incredibly hard. "Some of the players are only part time. They work all day and train at night. "And those sessions are tough. I am full-time and I found the training really, really hard. "I don't know how they could handle that after doing a day's work."