Belgium is currently spending a season-long loan at the Vicente Calderon.
Chelsea are said to be furious with Atletico Madrid after Uefa declared that goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois would be allowed to play for the La Liga outfit in this month’s Uefa Champions League semi-finals, according to reports in the Daily Mirror.
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The Belgium international had been expecting to miss the clash between his parent club and the side he has been loaned to in each of three previous campaigns after Atletico president Enrique Cerezo claimed that his club were unable to afford the one-off payment of £5m to Chelsea.
However, when news of this arrangement between the two sides was made public, Uefa then stepped in, releasing this statement on Friday morning: ‘The integrity of sporting competition is a fundamental principle for UEFA. Both the UEFA Champions League and the UEFA disciplinary regulations contain clear provisions which strictly forbid any club to exert, or attempt to exert, any influence whatsoever over the players that another club may (or may not) field in a match.
“It follows that any provision in a private contract between clubs which might function in such a way as to influence who a club fields in a match is null, void and unenforceable so far as UEFA is concerned.
“Furthermore, any attempt to enforce such a provision would be a clear violation of both the UEFA Champions League and the UEFA disciplinary regulations and would therefore be sanctioned accordingly.”
And then after the two clubs were then paired together in the semi-finals draw, Chelsea chief executive Ron Gourlay said: “The loan was arranged back at the start of the season and we will evaluate UEFA’s statement.
“As far as the player is concerned, Thibaut, he can play against Chelsea, in both ties, if he is selected by the Atletico Madrid manager. That is fact.”
But in private, the Blues are said to be furious with Atleti, who they believe have deliberately manipulated the situation so as to force Uefa to step in and allow Courtois to play against the Blues.