The Curious Cases of Chennai City FC

The Curious Cases of Chennai City FC

On 20 July 2020, the FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber (DRC) rendered three inter-connected decisions against the Indian club Chennai City FC (Club) in favor of several Spanish footballers - Sandro Rodríguez Felipe, Adolfo Miranda Araujo and Roberto Eslava Suárez (Players) - whereby it ordered the Club to pay the Players’ outstanding salaries and compensation for unilaterally terminating their employment contracts without just cause.

FIFA DRC, 20 July 2020, nos 20-00728, 20- 00729 & 20-00730

Introduction

What makes these cases so interesting is that each of the Players’ employment contracts contained a very detailed force majeure clause, providing that:

“17. Subject to the other provisions of this Agreement, the failure by a party to fulfil any of its obligations under this Agreement shall not be considered to be a breach of or a default under this Agreement in so far as the inability arises from an event of Force majeure, provided that the party affected by that event has taken reasonable precautions, has duly communicated the occurrence of the event to the other party, and has taken due care and attempted to mitigate the consequences of such event, all with...

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