The six Campeonato de Portugal clubs – including SC Olhanense – denied an opportunity to contest the play-offs for promotion to the Segunda Liga will not stop fighting for justice and are prepared to take their grievances to UEFA, the governing body of football in Europe.
In a joint press conference at a hotel in Lisbon, presidents Luís Torres (Olhanense), Adelino Ramos (Real Massamá), Jorge Neves (Benfica and Castelo Branco), Hugo Mendes (Lusitânia de Lourosa) and Jorge Fernandes (Fafe) were joined by video conference with Marco Monteiro (Praiense, Azores), and reinforced their request for a meeting with the president of the Portuguese Football Federation (FPF), Fernando Gomes, after he failed to attend the meeting scheduled for a month ago.
The FPF subsequently rewrote their rule book and enacted retroactive legislation to allow them to promote Vizela and Arouca at the expense of the other teams.
At a time when the Italian Football Association is arranging for play-offs for their Third Division promotion hopefuls, it would appear that the door has been shut on their counterparts here in Portugal.
Adelino Ramos, president of Real Massamá (Lisbon), said: “We are clubs in the Championship of Portugal, part of the national football scene. The president of the FPF has made himself available for many aspects of national football, some even outside the sphere of the Federation, but cannot find time to speak to us, his member clubs. We believe that he owes us explanations relating to these six affected clubs.”
Luís Torres, President of the Olhanense SAD, stated: “We will take our case to the Tribunal Arbitral do Desporto, civil courts, UEFA and even FIFA if necessary. Let justice be done.”
By CHRIS WRIGHT