Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid have lost their appeals to FIFA against one-year transfer bans for breaking rules protecting underage players.
FIFA said on Thursday that the Madrid clubs are blocked from registering new players in the next two transfer windows – winter and summer in 2017.
The FIFA appeals committee dismissed challenges filed by both clubs after transfer embargoes were imposed in January. The bans were later frozen pending the appeals verdicts.
Soon after FIFA’s verdict, Real Madrid announced that they will bring a further appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, and Atletico later said they would do the same.
When FIFA denied Barcelona’s appeal, the Catalan club also brought their case to CAS, only to see a final appeal rejected. During their ban, Barca signed players such as Arda Turan and Aleix Vidal, but they did not play until 2016.
FIFA said in a statement:
“The FIFA Appeal Committee has decided to reject the appeals lodged by Spanish clubs Atletico de Madrid and Real Madrid and to confirm in their entirety the decisions rendered by the FIFA Disciplinary Committee in the respective cases relating to the protection of minors.
“As such, both clubs are to serve a transfer ban that prevents them from registering any players at national and international level for the next two complete and consecutive registration periods for breaching articles 5, 9, 19 and 19bis as well as annexes 2 and 3 of the Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players (the ‘Regulations’).
“The transfer ban applies to each club as a whole — with the exception of the women’s, futsal and beach soccer teams — and does not prevent the release of players.
“Additionally, Atletico de Madrid and Real Madrid have been fined 900,000 and 360,000 Swiss francs respectively, while both clubs have been issued with a reprimand and a warning and given 90 days in which to regularise the situation of all minor players concerned.”
Huge ruling that will have massive impact in next summer’s transfer window. Manchester United have been strongly linked with moves for Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann and Real Madrid defender Raphaël Varane next summer. With neither club unable to sign replacements, the likelihood of either club selling one of its stars has to be very slim now.
The ruling by FIFA, that we all knew was coming has to bring into question Real Madrid’s decision not to strengthen its side this summer. The likes of Ronaldo, Ramos, Pepe and Modric are already 30 or older, and will they still be able to compete with Barcelona over the next two seasons with no replacements coming in?