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Financial Fair Play taking hold through reduction in European transfer spending - UEFA

Mon 3rd Sep 2012 | Money & Finance

UEFA has stated that the general reduction in transfer spending in European football is proof that its financial fair play (FFP) regulations are beginning to have a positive impact.

The FFP rules, designed to ensure clubs live within their means over a three-year rolling period, do not come into full effect until the 2013-14 season, but the 2011-12 campaign marked the first included in the initial assessment.

Clubs competing in European competition will be permitted to lose just Eur45 million over these three years with sanctions for FFP transgressors set to be imposed in the 2014-15 season – potentially including bans from European club competitions.

UEFA general secretary Gianni Infantino has stated there has been a noticeable reduction in transfer activity during the past two transfer windows. According to UEFA analysis, January 2012 saw transfer spending down to Eur393 million from the record Eur613 million set in January 2011, with this year’s figure 20% down on the average set over the past three years.

Ahead of the closure of summer transfer window in most European leagues on Friday, UEFA said that a total of Eur1.753 billion had been spent, compared to the four-year average of Eur2.249 billion. “The current winter and summer transfer spending of Eur2,065 million is only 75% of the 2008–11 average,” said Infantino, according to UEFA.com. “This underlines the impact of financial fair play and the fact that many clubs have overstretched or no longer have easy access to debt funding. These are clear facts and figures, and this is extremely significant.”

UEFA president Michel Platini stated that FFP had the full support of all of Europe’s main football stakeholders, adding: “I repeat – we will never go back. We took the decision to introduce financial fair play some years ago with the unanimous support of all the European clubs, the national associations, the politicians. This is something that is very positive, and we will continue.”

Posted by: Kev Howland

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