Reports suggest that Chelsea alongside four other Premier League clubs risk being hit with a transfer ban as FIFA investigates the acquisition of foreign players under the age of 18.
According to the French investigative website Mediapart, the integrity and compliance unit of FIFA has made a proposal that a two-year transfer ban which could stretch across four transfer windows be slammed on the London club for this, alongside13 other offenses plus a fine of £384,000.
A FIFA spokesman revealed: “As communicated in September 2017, investigations were opened concerning Chelsea FC as well as other English clubs in relation to potential breaches of the regulations on the status and transfer of players. The proceedings are ongoing and, to date, no decision has been passed by the FIFA judicial bodies. Thus, the clubs are to be presumed innocent unless decided otherwise. No further information can be provided as the cases are ongoing.”
A source also revealed: “This a massive investigation that will implicate a number of clubs. It will touch most of the big clubs around Europe and in the Premier League.”.
FIFA rules do not condone the transfer of players under 18 unless their parents have emigrated for non-soccer reasons, or both the club and player are located within 50 kilometers of a national border
Other exceptions include transfers that are done in the European Union or European Economic Area, and the minimum age is 16.
In cases like this, the club must put plans and measures in place to ensure that the players continue their education, whilst maintaining a high standard of living.
The investigation into Chelsea is centered on the signing of Bertrand Traore who was pictured playing an under-18 game against Arsenal when he was just 16.
The Stamford Bridge outfit have been under investigation for acquiring the signatures of 14 under-18 players since the news of them breaking transfer rules by signing Bertrand Traore broke out.
Meanwhile. Chelsea responded with a statement saying: “The club has fully cooperated with FIFA and has provided comprehensive evidence demonstrating its compliance with the applicable FIFA regulations.”