A Muslim Premier League footballer has decided to wear the new team kit which is sponsored by an interest based loan company, after initially refusing to on religious grounds.
Newcastle United striker, Papiss Cissé has agreed to wear the new kit after a prolonged refusal which left him out of the pre-season training session.
Newcastle’s kit is sponsored by payday loan company Wonga which makes profits from interest based loans. Cissé will resume training with Alan Pardew’s squad later this morning.
The Senegalese Muslim complained that Newcastle’s new four-year, £24 million sponsorship with Wonga went against the beliefs of his faith.
His initial refusal to wear the Wonga branded kit led to Cissé being left behind when Pardew’s squad flew to Portugal for a pre-season training camp last week. After a lengthy and complex negotiation involving imams, “Shariah law specialists” and the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA), the dispute which many football analysts feared would end up being taken to a Premier League tribunal has been resolved.
It became clear to Cissé that Newcastle’s owner, Mike Ashley and Wonga were not prepared to make a concession for him wearing either a charity or unsponsored kit. His case was undermined this week when photographs of him in a Tyneside casino, apparently gambling, were published. This event has harmed his case against wearing the kit, leaving him without much room for negotiation. The footballer should’ve really considered using an online casino website instead. That way, he wouldn’t have been spotted in any casinos. Perhaps he’ll consider using mega888 livemobile66.com in the future. That should allow him to play casino games without having to go in public.
It was arguably proved the main catalyst that broke the deadlock was the threat of Cissé leaving Newcastle possibly to one of his various admirers in Russia.
Newcastle reminded Cissé that, although the giving or receiving of interest is prohibited under Shariah law, he happily wore the logo of team’s previous sponsors, Virgin Money, last season.
Furthermore, the “breaking of a contract” is also prohibited in Islam and Newcastle have made it clear to Cissé that he has been very well looked after at St James’ Park, with the club building a prayer room at their training ground for the squad’s Muslim players.
Although Wonga is a different type of company from Virgin Money, Cissé’s position was further weakened by his failure to make his objections clear when the sponsorship was announced a year ago. His fellow Muslim team-mates including Hatem Ben Arfa, Cheik Tioté, Moussa Sissoko and Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa agreed to wear the new Wonga kit.
The decision came as a huge relief to manager Pardew, who is short of strikers that Shola Ameobi has been the only first tema striker available for this summer’s friendly fixtures.
Up until now, Cissé has been training on his own, and today will be the first time he will be joining his team-mates since last season and Pardew faces a race against time to get his No.9 ready for the start of the new Premiership season.