Ebrima Touray joins Fortune FC after winning his case against Team Rhino

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Ebrima Touray signed a three-year contract with Fortune FC on Sunday.

The right-back played for Team Rhino, making 51 appearances scoring 5 goals, and providing 19 assists. He was rumoured to have attracted interest from Real de Banjul and Falcons FC before Fortune signed him.

Touray’s case is a unique one; Rhino never gave him a contract and failed to give him his clearance when he demanded to leave. Coming into his third year, the player demanded monthly wages, but the club only continued to stick to their travel allowances.

He triggered the GFF clause, which allowed him to move.

“Failure to deposit the player’s contract will result in the GFF not recognising the contract unless a copy is duly deposited with the GFF, and the date the said contract is deposited with the GFF will be noted”

The landmark case ended up seeing Ebrima Touray deemed as free agent and eligible to play for a club of his choice effective January 5, 2024.

The player representative, Baboucarr Mbye, describes the case as a win for Gambian football.

“Because most players don’t dare take this step, my client sat for three months just waiting for the ruling. Most don’t have the instinct and are not willing to take a risk. Our case was one of the riskiest cases we undertook, and we stood by the truth. We needed independence and liberty in seeking the truth, and at the end of the day, we got the truth. It will be a very good lesson for most of these clubs so that they give their players contracts and pay them. Most representatives won’t allow clubs to sign their players without paying salaries. It’s a win for Ebrima, Fortune FC, and Gambian football.”

The Alkamba Times reached out to Team Rhino for their reactions, but the club refused to duel further in the matter. However, the medium went to speak to the secretary general of the Gambia Football Players Association, Dodou Janko.

“We do have cases, especially women-related cases. We are very disappointed that for the past four years we have been following the Federation for us to be part of the Players Status Committee. If a committee that is looking over the welfare of the players is here and you have an association that has the same mandate, but that association doesn’t have a say, then where is our voice?

The federation doesn’t want to work with us; they see us as threats, and we should be well represented. It’s a good one, and I am surprised and have heard it for a long time that a player has an issue with his team after the investigation concluded that his team was faculty and the player ended up winning. My worry is: Are they applying the same procedure that they used on Team Rhino to other teams?”

Janko went on to encourage players to speak up in such instances.

“We saw a typical case between Awa Tamba and Redscorpions; her contract expired, but Redscorpions failed to release her and went on to claim that she was their player still. This and many other cases are rampant here. The players are helpless and voiceless because they are afraid to voice out their frustrations and end up penalised by the clubs.

A joyful Touray reacted after signing the deal.

“Fortune is more than a club; the environment is friendly, and players and staff are welcoming. Their project suits my ambition; they are focusing on young players, and the coach is focusing on developing young players, and I am one of them. I am happy to join them; it has been some tough months for me.

 

The right-back is highly regarded among his peers and had a brief stint with Tallinding United in 16 games; he started nine games and had six assists.

 

The Kunjung Friends product is a direct replacement for Bakary Juwara, who left for Slovenia. Many draw comparisons with his energy and playing style. He has grown in maturity in the game since his first division debut at the age of 15 years. Based on his performance last season, he is likely to be cut from the next U20 provisional squad. His performance rate is very high.

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Baboucarr Fallaboweh Sports Editor (Buba Jallow Fallaboweh) is a Gambian football expert, football analyst & columnist. The Stockholm-based Journalist is a media officer, football Scout, PR, Influencer and Digital creator. I started my journalism career as a football analyst in 2012 with Vibes FM and went on to work with CityLimit, West Coast, Hot FM, Freedom Radio, Eye Africa and Afri Radio as a content producer and presenter. In 2013, I attended Football Daily on the BBC SPORTS where we discussed the different styles of Football played in Africa. I Went on to freelance for The Point Newspaper, Freedom Newspaper, Daily Observer and Standard Newspaper before being appointed as Sports Editor with the Alkamba Times in March 2022.  I have worked for Magazines like Glo Magazine and Foot54 covering Gambian football and African Football.   Between 2020 -2021 I worked as a scout for the Gambia Football Federation, scouting talents for the U17 &U20.  From 2017 to 2021, I served as Media officer for GFF First division teams Team Rhino and Marimoo and also as media Officer of Banjul FC, fourth Division tier in Sweden and Darboe’s FC (Female second division club in the Gambia). I served as a PR for Superstars Academy.   With Afrencon, I was a data analyst before I joined LightHouse as a head scout for the Gambia project. In organizational structures, I served as the ambassador of the John Bass Kidney Foundation and one of the founders of the foundation creating kidney awareness in the Gambia.   I also served two positions in the Gambian organization in Sweden, as Sports chairman and the secretary of the associations.   After 12 years of being a football journalist, I was named 3rd best sports column writer in Africa year 2021 by the reputable sports media organization AIPS. I finished in the top 35 in the world with my article titled Back way: Gambian footballers in deadly Voyage to Europe.   With over 500 articles and interviews, analysis, profiling, features and news, I was shortlisted for the Gambia Press Union National Journalist Award 2022. I submitted the article which was co-written alongside Momodou Bah From Living Through Despair to Being An Agent Of Hope, The Inspiring Story Of John Bass.   I have served as an advisers to Football academies, clubs, and players and others. I have hosted dozens of shows and was invited as a guest on both radio, TV and the online press. I also covered the Gambia's maiden AFCON debut in 2021 in Cameroon.  

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