‘The negotiation was long and difficult,’ says Farah of creating Marta’s LA story

Legislators in Marta’s home state, Alagoas, approve a change in name of the state’s principal stadium, from Estádio Rei Pelé (Pelé the King Stadium) to Rainha Marta (Marta the Queen). “Up until today Pelé has not done anything for our football and never gave attention to the stadium that bears his name,” says sponsoring deputy Timóteo Correia. The name change requires approval from state governor Teotonio Vilela Filho.

Dec 5

Umeå makes a second contract proposal to Farah, who promises to reply but never does. “[He] does not ring that often,” says Åkerlund.

Dec 27

Aloisio

Marta participates in the ceremonial kickoff at the Jogo das Estrelas, a match in Maceió for Alagoan all-stars. Aloisio (right), who plays for Al-Rayyan in Qatar, remains noncommittal about renaming the state stadium in Marta’s honor: “Marta is a source of pride for Alagoas,” he says.

5 Jan 09

LDB Malmö backer Kent Widding Persson withdraws his team’s contract offer.

Jan 6

Umeå withdraws its offer, saying in a press release that “this disinterest in having a discussion with Marta’s employers for the past five years makes Umeå IK choose to put an end to this very long history.” Marta, for her part, has been silent on the situation, only acknowledging on Brazilian TV program Mais você on Dec 11 that Los Angeles was a possibility. On her website on Dec 18, she says, “My plans are to either stay in Sweden or to go to the US.” “Marta is on holiday, and nothing has changed,” was Farah’s mantra during this delicate dance among club executives, sponsors and press.

Jan 8

Fabiano Farah

Farah (right) receives a draft contract from Los Angeles Sol, reportedly $500,000 per season for three years: “The negotiation was long and difficult given the importance of Marta for the WPS as their principal signing. … It is an extensive contract and is about 40 pages long,” Farah tells globoesporte.com. Sol GM Charlie Naimo tells the New York Times: “I will say that that’s a lot of money to be throwing around and that a figure of $500,000 a year is ridiculous.”

Jan 12

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