Chairman Jorien van den Herik confirmed at the club’s New Year reception that Feyenoord have resumed contract talks with Salomon Kalou. ‘It is still very important to keep Salomon at Feyenoord for a longer time. Furthermore, we don’t like players who leave on free transfers. I don’t need to pretend otherwise. But there is little use speculating about those talks at this time, because it’s too early for that. It is in any event important that we are entirely back on speaking terms after the flirt with PSV.’

In his speech Van den Herik once again advocated Salomon Kalou’s fast-track naturalisation, naming elite sportspeople who have benefited from the procedure and concluding that the absence of any lobbying by Netherlands Olympic Committee * Netherlands Sport Confederation (NOC*NSF) has worked against the striker. ‘Because the performances of the sport of football have been discriminated against for years, as we also observed in 2002 in the vote for Sporting Team of the Year,’ said Van de Herik. And that is all the more discussable because NOC*NSF generates around 6 million [euros] a year from Lotto and Toto funds. Funds that are actually belong to professional football.’

‘It is always said that football is advantaged everywhere, but this affair appears to prove the contrary, looking at the views of the minister at any rate. If Salomon Kalou had played a less popular sport his Dutch passport would have been quietly issued long ago. At least that is what I think. Now Kalou is a role model for the so-called strict entry policy, while he could now precisely be the proof that sport promotes social cohesion. The appeal will be heard on 26 January and I hope that justice will prevail in this case too.’

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