Jean Michael Seri has filed a criminal complaint against his former club Nice over his transfer to Fulham in the summer of 2018.
The midfielder joined Fulham as part of a double deal that also saw Maxime Le Marchand move to Craven Cottage from the French side last summer, with the then-Premier League club paying around €25million for the pair.
According to a statement made by Seri’s lawyers, as reported on by Sky Sports, the breakdown of the fee saw Seri undervalued at around €12million, while Le Marchand was over-valued at over €12.6million.
It is claimed that those valuations were set out in order to avoid Nice being forced to pay a transfer premium bonus of at least €700,000 to Seri, with the player’s lawyers pointing to the fact that the midfielder’s salary is three times that of Le Marchand as evidence of the inaccurate valuation of the two players.
The statement also suggests that other clubs would have been due damages from the deal as a result of sell-on clauses from previous transfers.
Since Seri’s move, Nice, who have previously denied the claim, have been taken over by Ineos, an energy group run by British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe.
Seri made 34 appearances for Fulham last season, scoring once, as they were relegated from the Premier League, with the midfielder joining subsequently joining Turkish side Galatasaray on a season-long loan earlier this summer.
Le Marchand meanwhile featured 26 times in the top flight last season, and has gone onto make five more appearances for the club this season, although he has only started once in the Championship so far this campaign.
In a strange way, this seems to sum up the catastrophe of Fulham’s Premier League campaign last season pretty well.
Having spent big throughput the summer transfer window last season, the club then proceeded to capitulate throughout the course of the campaign, with Seri one of a number of those signings who failed to live up to expectations.
Even though it seems that the Championship side themselves are facing no complaint from Seri – who is still technically their player – this does seem to be yet another problem created by their big-spending last season.
With the Cottagers already pushing for a swift return back to the Premier League, this is not the sort of distraction they would have wanted as they aim to put last season behind them.