Stunning news for FIFA that they have handed FC Barcelona a transfer ban for the next TWO transfer windows (this summer and next winter) for irregularities in the signing of 12 foreign players under the age of 18.
The FIFA investigation was reportedly centred on several minors who were registered by the club and participated in tournaments between 2009 and 2013.
“With regard to the case in question, FC Barcelona has been found to be in breach of art. 19 of the Regulations in the case of ten minor players and to have committed several other concurrent infringements in the context of other players, including under Annexe 2 of the Regulations,” FIFA’s press release reads.
FIFA’s Disciplinary Committee has deemed the breaches so serious and flagrant that they made the decision to ban one of Europe’s biggest clubs for two complete transfer windows, a decision that will have significant ramifications at the Camp Nou.
Despite Wednesday’s ruling, a Barca spokesperson has told AS the club do not expect the ban to come into force this summer.
“We are relaxed,” the spokesperson said. “It is a habitual process in which we have 90 days to explain how we signed these players.”
The Barca spokesperson better be right because with goalkeeper Victor Valdes leaving on a Bosman at the end of the season and club captain Carlos Puyol retiring, Barca were expected to be active in the transfer market this summer. If they cannot go out and buy reinforcements the squad will be really stretched, especially if any other members of the first team squad decide to leave during the summer.