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CAS to hear Chelsea’s transfer ban appeal on November 20

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Earlier this morning, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) announced the dates for upcoming hearings, including for case 2019/A/6301, which pits Chelsea against FIFA in our appeal against the two-window transfer ban.

The hearing will take place on November 20, which means that we will likely have a verdict before the January transfer window. A (most) positive ruling would reduce the transfer ban to one window — which we have already served this summer — thus allowing Chelsea to make new signings this winter.

The Blues decided to appeal to CAS following the FIFA Appeals Committee’s decision to (mostly) uphold FIFA’s punishment in May. The Appeals Committee allowed Chelsea to sign under-16 players, but maintained the ban for players above that age (for the men’s team) and the CHF 600,000 fine imposed by FIFA’s original sanctions back in February. Crucially, Chelsea did not seek a transfer ban freeze, reportedly being fearful of getting a three-window punishment for what could be seen as a frivolous appeal.

Why might it have been deemed frivolous? In the Appeals Committee’s recently published full report, it’s revealed that Chelsea broke FIFA rules 150 times with 69 players over the course of several years, with 27 of those breaches relating specifically to the signing of foreign underage players.

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Will Chelsea be allowed to make signings in January 2020?

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