January 24 According to an exclusive report by The Times chief reporter Martyn Ziegler,
The Football Federation will close a loophole in financial fair play rules.
Chelsea have used this loophole to sign players to eight-and-a-half-year contracts to amortize the impact of transfer spending.
Uefa officials plan to set the maximum amortization period for player transfer fees at five years, with the new policy set to be introduced before the summer transfer window.
It is reported that a number of clubs have raised concerns with UEFA about Chelsea’s policy.
Ukrainian winger Mykhailo Mudryk joined Chelsea this month on an eight-and-a-half-year deal, the longest in the Premier League’s 30-year history.
Based on amortization – the process of gradually writing off a player’s initial cost – the £80m transfer fee would be calculated by UEFA’s Financial Fair Play (FFP) at £9.41m per annum, whereas if Mudric signed a
For a four-year contract, his total cost will be calculated at £20m-a-year.
FIFA rules clearly state that players should be contracted for a maximum of five years, unless the laws of a particular country allow them to sign for longer, which the UK does not have.
UEFA will not prevent Chelsea from spreading the cost of the players they have already signed – defender Badia Shearer has a seven-and-a-half-year deal, Wesley Fofana has a seven-year contract and striker David
– Dattro Fofana signed a six-and-a-half-year deal that includes a one-year option.
However, any signings from the summer will be subject to a new five-year maximum amortization period.
Chelsea have already spent more than £400m in the summer and January transfer window, the highest in the world and in Premier League history.
The previous record was set by Manchester City, who spent £328.1 million in 2017-18.
UEFA insiders say the five-year limit will also help prevent clubs from falling further into financial trouble.
A source told The Times: “If other clubs start doing the same thing with eight-year contracts, it will be a mess, so we need to protect them because it just shifts the problem to the future. A club will either end up with
Keeping a player at a high salary who can’t be sold, or if they sell him after three or four years, they won’t be able to realize much profit (in accounting terms) because a lot of his transfer fee has not been amortized.”
Starting this month, UEFA introduced a new initiative called “team cost control”, that is, clubs should not spend more than 70% of their annual income on player salaries, transfers and agent fees.
The cap is 90% for this calendar year, 80% for 2024 and 70% for 2025.