Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate has calmed fans’ fears over the possible of loss of new signing Afonso Alves to a legal challenge.
Dutch club AZ Alkmaar claim they have a pre-contract agreement with the Brazil striker, who signed a four-and-a-half year deal with Boro just before the transfer window closed on Thursday.
Alkmaar intend to appeal to Fifa, despite the Dutch FA already ruling that the agreement is invalid.
AZ chairman Dirk Scheringa said: “We have a water-tight contract with him.”
Scheringa told Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf: “He really has a chance of getting banned from playing for the rest of the season.”
Southgate claimed that the any dispute was between the two Dutch clubs.
“The only thing that can happen is there could be compensation between Heerenveen and Alkmaar,” said the Boro boss.
“The player has got international clearance and is registered to the Premier League so there’s no way that (a ban) can happen.”
Alves is expected to be granted a work permit on Monday or Tuesday before commencing training with his new club on Wednesday.
“He’s got international clearance, he’s registered, he’s our player and it’s purely now about the fact that anybody coming to work in this country needs a working visa,” said Southgate.
“He should be with us by the middle of next week. “Will he play next weekend? We will have to look at his fitness because he has not played for a while.”