FIFA, the world governing body of soccer, has delivered judgement on Chelsea’s wheelings and dealings in the transfer market this week, banning them from buying any players for two transfer windows, hence until January 2011. They induced a player, Gael Kakuta, to break his contract with Lens.
One suspects there will be an appeal and reduction in the ban, but it looks like Chelsea, always among the big spenders in the English Premier League (EPL), will be hampered substantially in developing their squad once the ban takes effect. Of course, as Phil McNulty points out, Chelsea are hardly the only club guilty on this front, and it looks like Man United are next on FIFA’s list.
This would be an excellent way to level the EPL playing field: Ban the top clubs from making transfers for a while. Probably not as sustainable as limiting the rosters for these clubs, but much more effective than limiting the number of foreign players.