By Chris Wright
Truly shocking news this morning that FIFA have temporarily overturned the heavy, two-window transfer ban they metered out to Barcelona earlier this month, meaning that the club will be able to buy players this summer after all, pending an appeal.
FIFA originally barred Barca from signing or selling players until the summer of 2015 as punishment for, in FIFA’s own words, “breaches relating to the international transfer and registration of U18 players” – though the Catalan side are now currently free to do as they please until their appeal is heard.
FIFA’s statement on the lifting of the ban:
“The chairman of the FIFA Appeal Committee, Larry Mussenden, took into consideration the sanctions imposed against the club, the complexity of the matter, the start date of the next registration period – 1 July 2014 – and the fact that the FIFA Appeal Committee does not seem in a position to take a decision on the main issue early enough so that an eventual appeal of the club against its decision before the Court of Arbitration for Sport would still be decided before the beginning of the next registration period.
“Consequently, the chairman of the FIFA Appeal Committee considered that the appeal lodged by the club is to be granted suspensive effect.”
Well bugger us! Who’d have thunk, eh?