FIFA Temporarily Suspends Barcelona's Transfer Ban Following Club's Appeal
FIFA said on Wednesday that Barcelona's ban from transfer activity, "due to last until the end of next season, has been temporarily lifted" after the club's appeal, according to Brian Homewood of REUTERS. FIFA's Appeals Committe said that it had granted Barcelona the "suspensive effect" meaning that the sanctions "will be lifted until a final decision has been taken." FIFA said in a statement, "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" (REUTERS, 4/23). Barcelona responded positively to the decision. The club had presented an appeal within the required period and on Wednesday declared its respect for the resolutions (Barcelona).
PROCEEDING WITH CAUTION: In Madrid, Jordi Quixano reported Barcelona will "be able to carry out its planned roster remodeling for next season." Barcelona "received the development as excellent news, although its strategy starting now will be marked by discretion as it awaits a definitive resolution." A Barcelona source said, "Barça is not free from sanctions. We do not want to take risks and we will continue working with discretion. But the initial objective has been accomplished" (EL PAIS, 4/23). ESPN's Dermot Corrigan reported Barcelona has "already agreed to sign Croatia international Alen Halilovic this summer, with a deal also reportedly in place" to bring in Bundesliga club Borussia Mönchengladbach goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen. Barcelona President Josep Maria Bartomeu has "also stated that sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta will remain in place and oversee the club's planning this summer -- when a new centre-half and another goalkeeper are expected to be targeted" (ESPN, 4/23).