On the 5th and 6th of September 2019, the delegates at the Edinburgh Sports Conference heard from a number of high-level speakers representing FIFA, UEFA, CAS, national football associations, Clubs, and other stakeholders on the development and impact of the most important regulations currently affecting the football industry. Andrea Traverso, UEFA’s Managing Director of Financial Sustainability and Research presented on “The Impact of Financial Fair Play on the Transfer Market”, the first time he has made a presentation with this topic. Andrea Traverso joined UEFA in 2001, and in his time there, has contributed to and overseen the development and implementation of the UEFA Club Licensing system, including the Financial Fair Play component, across all UEFA member associations.
This article will therefore discuss the impact of Financial Fair Play (FFP) on the transfer market, making refence to Andrea Traverso’s presentation and expanding the discussion in areas with additional comment where pertinent.
Increase in spending by Clubs
Firstly, it should be noted that the 2019 summer transfer window once again broke spending records. UEFA reported that the European Club transfer spend for the summer 2019 (excluding intermediary costs) was EUR 6.8billion. This was a 19% increase on the record 2017 summer spend, and a 28% increase on summer 2018. Six of the top European Leagues - Belgium, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal and Spain - broke their transfer spending records.
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