FIFA provides further guidance on COVID-19 football regulatory issues

Following initial guidance published on 7 April 2020 (which addressed some of the football regulatory issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic), FIFA has issued further guidance following extensive consultation which makes further temporary changes to the FIFA Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players. There are also further temporary changes to the Rules Governing the Procedures of the Players' Status Committee and the Dispute Resolution Chamber.

The following changes have been made:

  • In order to avoid any concerns regarding unemployed players, players are permitted to be registered with a maximum of three clubs and are eligible to play in official matches for three clubs during the same season. This marks a change from the previous position where players were permitted to be registered with three clubs, but only play for two, during the same season.
  • In order to give priority to clubs to complete their (2019/20) season with their original squad, provide flexibility, and allow national associations to properly plan their football calendar, those associations following a dual-year calendar are permitted to commence the “first registration period” for the 2020/21 season prior to the completion of the 2019/20 season, subject to certain conditions. Therefore, the Premier League and EFL are free to ask that the summer 2020 transfer window open before the 2019/20 season is completed (currently scheduled to be 26 July 2020)
  • In order to provide financial relief to parties involved in disputes before FIFA, for any claim lodged between 10 June 2020 and 31 December 2020 (both inclusive), there will be no requirement to pay an advance of costs and no procedural costs shall be ordered. With regards to any claim lodged prior to 10 June 2020 which has yet to be decided, the maximum amount of the procedural costs shall be equivalent to any advance of costs paid.

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The content of this page is a summary of the law in force at the date of publication and is not exhaustive, nor does it contain definitive advice. Specialist legal advice should be sought in relation to any queries that may arise.