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Anzhi and Eto’o violated immigration law

Published time: September 14, 2011 09:11
Edited time: September 14, 2011 13:28
Anzhi's rookie Samuel Eto'o (L) controlls the ball in his team's away match against Rostov on August 27, 2011  (RIA Novosti / Aleksey Filippov)

Anzhi's rookie Samuel Eto'o (L) controlls the ball in his team's away match against Rostov on August 27, 2011 (RIA Novosti / Aleksey Filippov)

Anzhi’s star rookie Samuel Eto’o was not properly registered as a foreign citizen when he made his August 27 debut in the Russian Premier League, and therefore had no right to appear on the pitch.

­Sportbox.ru reported the violations were revealed during a check performed by the Russian Federal Migration Service.

Anzhi will now face administrative penalties in accordance with Russian law, but will escape punishment by the football authorities.

Earlier reports in the Russian media claimed the Makhachkala side would be also penalized under Article 99 of the Russian Football Union’s disciplinary rules regarding unlawful participation in a match.

This would have meant the team being slapped with a huge fine and a 3-0 technical defeat.    

However, the president of the Russian Premier League, Sergey Pryadkin, dismissed the reports as “nonsense.”  

“The issue of registration of foreign players under immigration law has been repeatedly raised at the league’s general meetings," he said. "In the end, we decided that we should only look at the football component of the application – the contract and the transfer certificate. If there was a violation, the club will have to answer. But everything related to the registration of players under the immigration laws of our country is the responsibility of the club before the bodies of the Federal Migration Service.”

Pryadkin stressed that the Premier League has no questions concerning Eto’o’s application and added that “Anzhi aren’t under threat of technical defeat.”

Anzhi’s away game at Rostov on August 27 finished with a 1-1 scoreline, with the Cameroonian super-forward delivering the visitors’ only goal.

Samuel Eto’o moved to Anzhi from Inter Milan on August 25.

According to media reports, the 30-year-old has become the world’s highest-paid player, earning around $30 million annually in a three-year deal.