It’s taken less than an hour. As expected, Chelsea have responded to FIFA’s official sanctions after finding the club in breach of rules regarding the transfers of players under the age of 18, with a strong denial and the intention of launching an appeal “shortly” — first with FIFA, then, if necessary with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
The club’s official statement is as follows:
Chelsea FC has today received a decision from the FIFA Disciplinary Committee concerning alleged breaches of the FIFA Regulations that relate to the international transfer of players under the age of 18. The decision imposes a transfer ban of two consecutive registration periods and a fine of 600k Swiss francs. Chelsea FC categorically refutes the findings of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee and will therefore be appealing the decision.
The club wishes to emphasise that it respects the important work undertaken by FIFA in relation to the protection of minors and has fully cooperated with FIFA throughout its investigation. Initially, Chelsea FC was charged under Articles 19.1 and 19.3 in relation to 92 players. We welcome the fact that FIFA has accepted that there was no breach in relation to 63 of these players, but the club is extremely disappointed that FIFA has not accepted the club’s submissions in relation to the remaining 29 players. Chelsea FC acted in accordance with the relevant regulations and will shortly be submitting its appeal to FIFA.
-source: Chelsea FC
The appeals process will likely take many months — the investigation itself took at least a year and a half! — which should allow Chelsea to still sign and register new players this summer even if the two-window ban doesn’t get reduced.
Atlético, Real, and Barcelona all appealed as well, but only Real got their punishment reduced. The appeals processes in the case of the two Madrid teams lasted a solid 10 months.
January 2016: FIFA imposes 2 transfer window ban on Real Madrid & Atletico Madrid.— Rob Harris (@RobHarris) February 22, 2019
(on hold pending appeals)
December 2016: Real ban cut to 1 window by Court of Arbitration for Sport, only applied January 2017.
2017: CAS upheld Atletico's 2-window ban which covered Jan & summer
And so the dance begins.