Sheffield United are claiming more than £30m in compensation
West Ham's hopes of avoiding a huge payout in the Carlos Tevez affair have suffered a serious setback.
The Hammers are drafting a "statement of appeal" to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, yet the Lausanne court will not be able to hear the case.
Its secretary general, Matthieu Reeb, told BBC Sport: "As things stand, CAS would not be able to hear this case.
"We would need agreement from Sheffield United and for Football Association rules to allow an appeal to CAS."
Sheffield United are unlikely, to say the least, to give agreement to an appeal that could overturn the decision of the independent tribunal.
And the FA actually has a rule that stipulates there cannot be an appeal from the verdict of an independent tribunal.
We do not accept that one player's contribution can be placed over that of the team as a whole
West Ham statement
Rule K5c states that by signing up to arbitration, "the parties shall be deemed to have waived irrevocably any right to appeal, review or any recourse to a court of law".
A West Ham spokesman said the club was currently "drafting a statement of appeal" to CAS.
The independent tribunal, whose verdict has not yet been officially published, ruled that Tevez was not eligible to play at the end of the 2006/07 season and played a key role in West Ham's Premiership survival.
Sheffield United, who were relegated, are claiming more than £30m in compensation from the Hammers.
The tribunal will decide on the amount of compensation to be paid at a further hearing, due to be held early next year.
Earlier this week the Hammers issued a statement saying: "While we respect the judgement of the arbitration panel, we do not accept that one player's contribution can be placed over that of the team as a whole nor used as the basis for judging the results of a 38-game season.
"This ruling undermines the significant efforts of our entire playing squad and coaching staff over the duration of the 2006/07 Premier League season and does not take sufficient account of the performances of the other 19 clubs in the competition.
"We acknowledge again that the club broke Premier League rules in the original signing of Carlos Tevez but we were dealt with accordingly by an independent Premier League commission and accepted the significant punishment handed down at that time.
"In light of this and the wider implications of this latest ruling for English football we have decided to ask that the case be considered by the Court of Arbitration for Sport."
West Ham were found guilty last April of acting improperly and withholding vital documentation over the ownership of Argentine duo Tevez and Javier Mascherano, whom they signed in 2006.
A three-man Premier League arbitration panel fined the Hammers £5.5m, but did not dock them points, and they went on to survive the drop on the final day, while Sheffield United were relegated.
Having failed in their attempt to have the original punishment overturned, the Yorkshire club invoked an FA rule that allows clubs with a legal dispute to go before an independent tribunal.
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