Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid have both found themselves denying reports that they face a transfer ban for illegitimately signing international youth players.
Atletico Madrid put in a defensive masterclass last night (April 29), with Fernando Torres scoring a late goal to defeat Villarreal 1-0, however Real Madrid showed their attacking flair, hammering Almería 3-0 at the Bernabeu. Despite these victories, neither of the Madrid clubs will be very happy this morning following news concerning their recent transfers.
Spanish news website/radio channel Cadenaser were the first to report these revelations. Real Madrid appeared to be wary of possible sanctions and so have instigated pre-sale contracts with Brazilian full-back Danilo (of Porto F.C.). Cadenaser also reported that FIFA have already contacted the Spanish FA regarding Atletico Madrid’s possible charges.
Both clubs have fervently denied these claims, both releasing separate statements. Real Madrid fully denies the apparent charges,
“Real Madrid reiterates that the club has always scrupulously adhered to FIFA regulations; Real Madrid is once again saddened by these reports, some of which are intended to cause harm, the only aim of which are to implicate the club in supposed infractions that have not been committed. Real Madrid reiterates once again its absolute commitment to the defense, protection and the correct and healthy development of minors, which take precedence over sporting interests and, as a consequence, confirms its total support of these FIFA regulations and the club’s adherence to them.”
Atletico also denied any wrongdoing, explaining that they have always been compliant with any FIFA officials.
“We [Atletico Madrid] collaborated with FIFA in the investigation at all times. We are sure that we acted correctly. Because all the licences were processed after approval from the Madrid soccer federation and the Spanish football federation.”
FIFA’s law regarding the signing of youth players is as follows. If any of the following do not apply, Atletico & Real Madrid may face sanctions.
1) The player’s parents have moved country for their own, non-related reasons;
2) The move takes place within the European Union if a player is aged between 16 and 18;
3) The player’s home is less than 50 kilometres from the national border being crossed.
As of yet, it hasn’t been reported who the accused youth players are for either Madrid club. Speculation was aroused when Real Madrid signed Norwegian wonder-kid Martin Odegaard, 16, though it is believed that his signing has little to do with the potential charges.
Fellow Spanish powerhouse Barcelona F.C. are currently facing a transfer ban, so if both Madrid sides are found guilty of these claims and a transfer ban is implemented, La Liga’s top three teams will not be allowed to purchase or sell any players until (at least) January 2016. The ban on the Madrid clubs however, if enacted immediately, would mean that neither Atletico nor Real Madrid would be permitted to make any signings until June 1, 2016.
[Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images]