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Seraing and Doyen lose CAS appeal over TPO, but recruitment ban reduced

April 11 – The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) have finally released a statement upholding FIFA’s recruitment ban on Belgian club RFC Seraing for breaching third-party ownership rules – but has confirmed is has reduced the sanction from four transfer windows to three.

The third-tier side had two contracts with Malta-based football investment fund Doyen in 2015 and had joined Doyen in challenging FIFA with a complaint that outlawing TPO went against a number of EU competition regulations.

The claim was also centred around the argument that TPO came into effect “against the advice and opinion of the vast majority” of those consulted by FIFA itself.

FIFA’s Disciplinary Commission initially banned Seraing from registering players on a national and international level for four consecutive registration periods, and imposed a fine of CHF 150,000.

Seraing went to CAS requesting that the penalty be annulled but lost.

But in upholding the reasons for the sanction, CAS said it was “too severe” and reduced the duration of the ban on recruitment to three consecutive transfer windows.

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