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Disqualified For Technical Breach Despite No Advantage: The Cautionary Tale Of A Rally Driver

This article was written for and first published by LawInSport. While nearly all of the column inches relating to recent FIA stewarding decisions have (unsurprisingly) focused on the fall out of the ‘Hamilton v Verstappen’ F1 2021 season finale, an interesting recent decision1 in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC3)2 underlines just how impactful decisions in the fast-paced world of … Continue Reading

Real Estate Law May Soon Play A Role In The Metaverse

This article originally appeared in Law360 on February 15, 2022. Authored by Alexis Montano, Real Estate Associate, Phoenix, AZ. The metaverse is a mix of augmented virtual reality that operates with the help of blockchain functions such as nonfungible tokens, or NFTs, and cryptocurrencies. Think of the metaverse as a universe with several platforms making … Continue Reading

The FA v Marc Bola

On 3 September 2021, The FA announced that Marc Bola (“the Player”), of Middlesbrough FC, had been charged with misconduct for an alleged Aggravated Breach of the FA Rules, 2021/2022 (“the 2022 Rules”), rules E3.1 and E3.2 (“the Charge”). The Charge related to a Tweet the Player posted from his Twitter account on 14 April … Continue Reading

The Jump Off: Two Equestrian Leagues Continue To Go Head To Head

The equestrian sport of show jumping takes place across the world, attracting an ever-increasing media profile.  It therefore comes as little surprise that event organisers have sought to ride the wave of the sport’s growing interest and publicity by seeking to establish various new show jumping competitions. Two such leagues are Major League Show Jumping … Continue Reading

Andre Onana and UEFA’s Anti-Doping Regulations – A Cautionary Tale

Introduction Andre Onana, the first team goalkeeper for AFC Ajax (“Ajax”) and the Cameroon national team played his first competitive match for over nine 9 months on 13 November 2021, when he started for Cameroon in a 4:0 victory over Malawi in a FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 African Qualifier. Prior to this match, Onana had … Continue Reading

European Parliament proposes new regime to combat piracy of live sports content

Scale of the piracy problem The threats posed to the funding of sport by media rights piracy is nothing new.  However, as recognised by the European Parliament in its resolution published 19 May 2021, developments in digital technology and the proliferation of access to digital content (in particular through IPTV) have, in turn, increased the … Continue Reading

FIFA takes decisive action in strengthening women’s employment rights

In November, FIFA announced that its Stakeholders Committee (the “FSC”) had approved reforms aimed at strengthening employment rights for female players. These reforms offer necessary protections, such as guaranteed maternity leave, to all female football players playing for a club that is regulated by FIFA. At this stage the changes are only ‘proposed’, but they … Continue Reading

Nikolay Bodurov vs Esteghlal: FIFA DRC considers ‘force majeure’ effect of COVID-19

Following the near global suspension of football activity, many clubs were put in the unfortunate position of being unable to satisfy their existing contractual obligations as significant revenue streams from gate receipts, sponsorship and broadcast were all severely impacted. FIFA has recently published a decision which concerns the extent to which the global pandemic has … Continue Reading

United States District Court Delivers RKO as Motion for Summary Judgment is Dismissed

A recent United States district court decision on copyright infringement has brought the issue of recreation of tattoos in video games back into the spotlight, and has cast doubt on an earlier ruling from another district court in a different judicial circuit. The gravamen of the case was the digital depiction of five tattoos on … Continue Reading

Messi scores goal in trade mark dispute: registering celebrity names as trade marks

The Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) has ruled that, after a decade-long legal battle, football ace Lionel Messi has the right to register his name as a trade mark. This interesting case confirms that celebrity names are registrable as trade marks. However, whilst there are some advantages to seeking such protection, there … Continue Reading

Gambling sponsorship and advertising shakeup in Spanish football

The Spanish Government has published a proposal for measures which, if passed, will restrict gambling advertising in Spanish football. One of the proposed measures is the ban of gambling sponsors on football shirts. Although the measures are designed to protect consumers, they could have significant financial implications for Spain’s top clubs. It is worth noting … Continue Reading

Intermediaries and contractual certainty – lessons from Winlink Marketing Limited v The Liverpool Football Club and Athletics Grounds Limited

It’s no secret that gambling has become a huge part of football. With over £349 million in kit sponsorship being paid to Premier League football clubs in the 2019/20 season alone, it is clear that betting companies and the gambling sector as a whole make a significant contribution to the ongoing financial sustainability of professional … Continue Reading

The NFL Approves New Measures To The “Rooney Rule”

The NFL recently introduced new measures to expand what is colloquially known as the “Rooney Rule,” which was instituted to promote and encourage diversity hiring. Named after the late Dan Rooney – former owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers and chairperson of the National Football League’s (“NFL”) diversity committee – the Rooney Rule is a NFL … Continue Reading

FIFA issues guidelines on dealing with COVID-19 related regulatory issues

On Tuesday, FIFA published a set of guidelines to address some of the practical issues that have arisen as a consequence of the COVID-19 crisis. The key areas of focus were: (1) expiring agreements; (2) frustrated agreements; and (3) registration periods. A number of other issues were also considered in brief.   It is important … Continue Reading

New Year, New Deal in the WNBA

A new and historic agreement has been reached between the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) and the Women’s National Basketball Players Association (WNBPA), which includes higher salaries, improved benefits and better work and travel conditions. Following the 2018 season, the WNBPA exercised its option to opt out of the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) with the … Continue Reading

Questions Raised Over Marketing Restrictions on Olympic Athletes

It has been reported that the European Commission met with officials from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in November to discuss rules that restrict athletes’ marketing activities during a ‘blackout’ period around the Olympic Games. The meeting follows a recent ruling in Germany, which found that certain IOC restrictions breached antitrust rules and unlawfully limited … Continue Reading

A slam-dunk? Sweeping and dramatic changes may be coming to the NBA

Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe dropped, what is known as a Woj Bomb, last week as they announced that the NBA is in high level discussions with the NBPA (the National Basketball Players Association) and broadcasting partners concerning “sweeping and dramatic changes to the league calendar that include a reseeding of the four conference finalists, … Continue Reading

The LeBron Effect, Grand Slams and Record Sales: Matching Rights in Football Kit Sponsorship Deals

On 25 October 2019 Mr Justice Teare handed down his judgment in the kit sponsorship dispute between New Balance Athletics (“NB”) v Liverpool Football Club (“LFC”). The dispute concerned whether NB had validly exercised its matching right set out in the contract between the parties entered into on 3 June 2011 (the “NB Agreement”) in … Continue Reading

Avant Garde by name, avant-garde by nature: French Football Federation ruling threatens to stop real-life fantasy team

When French sixth-tier side Avant Garde Caennaise (“AG Caen”) were founded in 1902, even the most forward-thinking supporters could not have imagined that the club would become the pioneers that they are today. The Project Two thousand fans currently manage the team, making decisions such as the team’s line up and substitutions, via a third … Continue Reading

Brussel’s Court of Appeal Challenges CAS Jurisdiction Clause in FIFA Statutes

In recent weeks, the media has reacted rather dramatically to the decision handed down by the Brussel’s Court of Appeal on 28 August 2018, in a case brought by Belgian football club RFC Seraing (Seraing). The precise impact of the decision remains to be seen although it is unlikely that this represents the fall of … Continue Reading
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