A Czech club recently made headlines by signing a 22-year-old who has never played football competitively. The signing occurred after his father reportedly paid €20,000 to secure his son’s place on the team.
The club, FK Usti nad Labem play in the Czech third tier and are currently sixth in the league having taken 10 points from their first six games.
In a sport where talent is often nurtured from a young age and players go through rigorous youth academies and grassroots programs, this signing has raised many eyebrows in the footballing world.
Martin Podhajsky has never played football and is actually a law student and an employee at a real estate company.
His experience with football is typically limited to FIFA games but the rookie has been registered with the Football Association of the Czech Republic.
Apparently the club has already made plans for him and is set to join the team in training as well as make a debut.
”He has never played football, only FIFA from what I know. However you don’t just see such money rolling on the floor every day. If someone gives me this type of money, I’ll let anyone play,” the club president said.
This instance has brought to light the potential pitfalls of letting financial influence determine who gets a shot at the professional level. The money paid by Martin’s father raises questions about fairness and integrity in the sport
“He said himself that he would like to play, then his dad called and things started to move. Martin is a law student and an employee of Viagem,” he added.
Usti have seven home games in a row because of ongoing reconstruction of the athletics track at their home ground, the City Stadium.
Interestingly it seems as though the club’s fans are supportive of the decision as a poll shows that 63% don’t have a problem with it and believe it is a win-win.
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