As ever, Chelsea are facing a crucial summer full of important decisions, further complicated by multiple moving parts, including the futures of Eden Hazard, Callum Hudson-Odoi, and even manager Maurizio Sarri. With the club 20-30 points off the pace set by the league’s best, improvements of several kind are desperately needed.
One major complication in all that however is Chelsea’s transfer ban, which is under appeal but remains active thanks to FIFA’s latest shocking decision. If Chelsea are unable to register new players for the next two transfer windows, Sarri, or whoever’s in charge, would certainly would have his work cut out for him — even if the ban would likely provide a boost for the idea of developing our own talent from the world class Academy.
Chelsea do have one last resort in avoiding or delaying that ban, and that is to appeal to a higher court than FIFA. But Chelsea can’t launch the CAS appeal until the FIFA Appeals Committee gives their verdict, and no one seems to know exactly when that might happen.
Some, like the Daily Mail, expect that to happen this week based on the initial reports of FIFA taking two weeks after the April 11 hearing to put that together. Others, like the Evening Standard’s Simon Johnson are less confident, citing an unnamed FIFA source who claims that the decision is “not imminent”.
While technically the summer transfer window doesn’t open until July 1, clubs usually start doing business and even agreeing moves well before the end of the season, which is in just two weeks. But the uncertainty of Chelsea’s eligibility to play in the transfer market this summer is making that process even more difficult than we usually seem to make it.
And so we wait.