Taking illegal drugs is never the smartest thing to do, especially if you’re a professional soccer player. Athletes are tested for illegal substances quite often and in the case of Romanian international soccer player Adrian Mutu, it’s going to cost him $22 million. What might make matters seem to be worse for Mutu is that he wasn’t caught taking performance-enhancing drugs. He tested positive for cocaine use.

Mutu was ordered by a federal judge to pay English Premier League (EPL) soccer club Chelsea 17.1 million euros because taking the illegal drug was ruled to be a breach of his contract. Mutu was playing for Italian team AC Parma when he was sold to Chelsea in August 2003 for a price of 22.5 million British pounds. He then agreed to a five-year deal with the London-based team at a salary of 2.35 million pounds a year. His agent was also given a 500,000 euro bonus.

Mutu tested positive for cocaine during the second year of his contract and Chelsea terminated it. He was then banned from playing anywhere in the world by FIFA, the world’s governing body of soccer, and the English Football Association banned the player for seven months. Mutu appealed Chelsea's decision with the EPL’s board of directors, but they said he breached the contract without any just cause. Mutu also appealed to the Arbitration for Sport, which is based in Lausanne, Switzerland, but they also dismissed his appeal.

FIFA ordered Mutu to pay Chelsea 17.1 million euros back in 2008, which represents the unamortized amount of the original transfer fee which the club paid to Parma. This also included the agent’s fee and any other bonuses. Again, Mutu appealed and his case was thrown out by the Court of Arbitration for Sport as well as the Swiss Federal Supreme Court. Chelsea then contacted the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida and asked it to confirm the award and to enforce it.

Mutu said he was being punished and the monetary award he was told to pay Chelsea was contrary to public policy. However, Federico Moreno, a U.S. district judge, upheld the award and said the unamortized costs were due to the fact Mutu breached his contract and therefore the award wasn’t against public policy. Moreno said that Chelsea paid a large sum of money for the player and the club suffered a substantial loss because he breached his contract. He added that even if FIFA doesn’t have the power to order him to repay Chelsea the $22 million, English law does. Mutu's lawyers didn’t comment on the ruling.

But Mutu apparently didn’t learn anything from saga with Chelsea since he failed a doping test in January 2010 while playing for Italian club Fiorentina. He was handed a one-year suspension, which was then reduced to six months. The club also suspended him for breaching his contract in January 2011. However, he was reinstated after publicly apologizing to the club and firing his agent, but was released a few months later.

Mutu started his pro soccer career with FC Arges Pitesti in Romania and since 2000 the striker’s played for six different Italian team as well as Chelsea in England. He’s scored over 170 goals during his career and was signed by Italian team Cesena to a two-year deal last summer.

Written by Ian Palmer via FeedCrossing, Content News Source

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