Friday, November 12, 2010

12 November 2004 - To Be Fair, Marlet Was Crap

On 12 November 2004, former Fulham manager Jean Tigana won a legal claim against the club and owner Mohammed Al Fayed entitling him to £2.5 million in compensation.

Tigana (pictured) had taken over at Fulham, then in Division One, in July 2000 and earned promotion to the Premier League in his first season. In his second season, Tigana made some expensive additions to the squad, including goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar (£7 million) and striker Steve Marlet (£11.5 million), in an effort to preserve the club's top-flight status. But by his third season, Fulham were struggling to avoid relegation, due in part to poor performances from Marlet, leading Al Fayed to sack Tigana in April 2003.

Fulham later sued Tigana, claiming he had "grossly overpaid" for van der Sar and Marlet by an approximate total of £7 million (and suggesting he had taken a portion of the excess in kickbacks). Tigana countered with a lawsuit of his own, alleging breach of contract.

The High Court considered Al Fayed's testimony to be unreliable and ruled in favor of Tigana, finding that he had "behaved properly and conscientiously in his dealings with Fulham." The ruling entitled Tigana to an award of over £2.5 million from Fulham in share options and other compensation. He currently manages Bordeaux after two seasons in charge of Beşiktaş.

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