AC Milan striker Rafael Leao has been slammed a sum of €16.5m by former club Sporting Club de Portugal as a fine for terminating his contract in 2018.

The 22-year-old striker in unison with most of his then teammates mutually severed ties with the Portuguese club at the end of the 2017-18 season amid chaos from fans which had erupted because the capital club failed to qualify for the Champions League.

Off he went to Lille on a free transfer in 2018 before he later got on the plane to sign for AC Milan the following year costing €23m.

However, not long after that transfer a Portuguese Arbitral Court of Sport in March 2020 ordered Leao to pay €16.5 million stating the player’s exit from the club (Sporting CP) was unlawful.

“The player to pay to the Sporting the amount of 16.5 million euros (plus interest), as compensation for the unlawful termination of the sports employment relationship.”

Arbitral Court ruling in 2020

Although Sporting CP were adamant with the ruling demanding that all €40 million release clause of the player be paid by the player but a specially appointed independent figure deemed that a fee of between €15m and €18m would be sufficient compensation for the Portuguese club according to reports gathered.

The Portuguese international failed in his attempts to gain an annulment of the decision at an appeal court in Lisbon as reports made it clear his plea was rejected.

With this latest development, the former Lille striker has a right to appeal the Court’s decision to the Supreme Court as the issue does not concern current club Milan.

Rafael Leao has been in fine form for AC Milan this season scoring eight goals in 24 appearances in all competitions this campaign and was in action in a 0-0 draw against Juventus.

This certainly will be a big blow for the rising star touted by many to be the greatest thing to come out of Sporting CP academy ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Bruno Fernandes.