Barcelona have just been handed a transfer ban by FIFA for breaking rules on the signing of international players aged under 18. Alongside the ban, they have also been fined £300,000. Whilst the size of the fine is negligible, the ban, if upheld, could be a disaster for the Catalan side, with Victor Valdes and Carlos Puyol both set to leave this summer.
Barcelona were not the only side to hit the headlines this morning for being a little bit naughty. The Dutch FA announced that they were to launch an investigation about the link between Chelsea and Vitesse Arnhem – with former officials of the Dutch club claiming that Chelsea coercing them to not qualify for the Champions League to ensure UEFA rules were not breached.
What does this mean for world football? Well it shows that whilst cheats may get caught, they also prosper.
The Champions League Semi-Final could well line up as:
- Dec 2013: Investigated by European Commission over public funding issues
- Jan 2014: Former president Sandro Rosell resigned in January 2014 over irregularities about the Neymar deal.
- Jan 2014: Neymar deal investigated “in connection with the transfer of embezzlement”.
- Feb 2014: Charged with tax fraud over Neymar deal.
- May 01: Sold training ground to Madrid Regional Council for inflated rate of £170m, allowing them to wipe out all debt.
- April 2013: European Commission launch investigation into Real Madrid after council paid Real Madrid €22.7m in ‘compensation’.
- Sept 2005: Forced through a deal to sign John Obi Mikel, despite him already having signed a contract with Manchester United
- Sept 2009: Banned for 2 transfer windows (later reduced to one) over Gael Kakuta deal.
- April 2014: Investigated by Dutch over link with Vitesse Arnhem.
- April 2014: President Uli Hoeness handed 3 and a half year prison sentence for tax evasion.
Despite what you think of Gazidas and Kroenke. At least they are not crooks and cheats. Saying that, with the current song being about ‘doing it The Arsenal Way’ maybe we should get involved in bribes, brown envelopes, et al as we have a good history of that!