FIFA discuss plan to stop players changing club before season ends, and cut wages

March 27 – FIFA have drawn up radical plans to offset football being wiped off the map by Covid-19 by recommending player contracts be extended automatically until the end of the season (whatever date that becomes) and to push transfer windows back.

The plans are included in an internal document seen by Reuters and presented to FIFA’s Coronavirus Working Group.

The proposals, apparently being discussed today, represent a ‘series of guiding principles’ for member associations.

The issue of expiring player contracts, most of which kick in at the end of June, is one of the biggest questions across the football world.

FIFA cites the global pandemic as a ‘force majeure’  and under the plans players looking to move clubs when their contracts expire will be made to stay at their clubs until this season is finished – with the clubs paying for any extension.

New contracts should be pushed back to the new start date of the new season. In the case of overlapping seasons “priority must be given to the former club to complete their season with their original squad”. Loan arrangements would also be extended.

FIFA is also reported to be discussing the idea of players taking a pay cut “by a reasonable amount for any period of work stoppage.”

The documentation also proposes altering the transfer window under which it would last four months and  coincide with the end of the current season, whenever that is.

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