FIFA has announced that it has rejected Barcelona’s appeal against the sanctions imposed on the club over breaches of rules around the transfer of under-18 players.
According to the ruling, Barcelona will be unable to sign new players in the next two transfer windows; beginning in September 2014 and ending January 2016.
FIFA’s sanctions will not take place immediately. That means the La Liga side can further add to its squad between now and the end of the current transfer window.
The statement from FIFA reads: “FC Barcelona is to serve a transfer ban which will see the club prevented from registering any players at both national and international level for two complete and consecutive transfer periods, starting with the next registration period (January 2015).”
“Barcelona has also been ordered to pay a fine of 450,000 Swiss francs (£296,000) and been given a period of 90 days from today in which to regularise the situation of all minor players concerned.”
In April, following a FIFA investigation centered on several players who were registered and played between 2009 and 2013, Barcelona and the Spanish football federation were found guilty of a serious infringement of the rules in relation to ten players.
FIFA placed a two-window transfer embargo on the Spanish club, but that decision was suspended by the governing body following Barcelona’s appeal.
To this point, Barcelona have taken advantage of the ban’s temporary suspension by bringing in several big-money transfers this summer, the biggest of them all being Luis Suarez from Liverpool.
Moments after today’s announcement from FIFA, Barcelona released a statement which indicated the club will now appeal this latest decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
The statement reads: “Following the resolution announced today by the FIFA Appeals Committee on violations of regulations regarding the transfer and registration of children aged under 18 years, FC Barcelona announces that it shall continue defending its interests before the highest sporting authority, in this case the Court of Arbitration for Sport.”
“FC Barcelona may not in any way share a resolution that is an affront to the spirit of our Masia, a world renowned example of academic, human and sporting education.”