Determined to return to its lofty perch in the United Football League and stay competitive in international play, Global signed Spanish striker Rufo Sanchez and national player Angel Guirado to beef up its roster for the coming season.
But the announcement of Sanchez’s acquisition was met by protest from his former club, Stallion, which insisted that last season’s UFL top scorer and Golden Ball winner remains under contract with the reigning league and Cup champions.
“Rufo (Sanchez) is not a free agent and has an existing contract with Stallion,” Stallion coach Ernie Nierras said on Twitter Wednesday night.
“We are in negotiations with Global FC for the services of Rufo Sanchez. Until those negotiations are final, Rufo Sanchez is still a player of Stallion.”
Sanchez reiterated that his contract with Stallion ended last Aug. 16. Stallion has a team option to extend for another year, which, reliable sources said, it did not exercise before the players’ contract ended.
“I can’t wait to start this challenge with Global,” Sanchez said.
Sanchez’s move is the biggest transfer news of the preseason so far as teams like Loyola Meralco also strengthened their rosters.
Stallion parted ways with some of its players, including Sanchez’s compatriot, Joaco Canas, a defender who has agreed to transfer to the Loyola Meralco Sparks.
The Sparks also acquired another big player available in the transfer market in Korean winger Lee Joo-young from Stallion and attacking midfielder Boyet Canedo from Pachanga Diliman.