Zee Media Bureau/Jayanta Oinam
FC Barcelona received a jolt on Wednesday as the FIFA Disciplinary Committee imposed sanctions on the club for the international transfer and registration of players under the age of 18.
The Spanish champions have been given a transfer ban at both national and international level for two complete and consecutive transfer periods, together with a fine of CHF 450,000. Besides the ban and fine, the club was granted a 90-day period to regularise the situation of all minor players.
The investigations concerned several minor players who were registered and participated in competitions with the club.
According to the FIFA Website, the committee had earlier conducted investigations on Barcelona allegedly registering several non-Spanish minors over various periods between 2009 and 2013. The committee has found Barcelona to be in breach of article 19 of the Regulations. The article underlines that FIFA takes the protection of minors in football very seriously. And the protection of minors is one of the key principles included in the agreement concluded between FIFA, UEFA and the European Commission in 2001.
Besides the Camp Nou outfit, football`s governing body also sanctioned Spanish football body, the Real Federacion Espanola de Futbol (RFEF) for the same violation.
The decision arrived hardly 24 hours after the Catalan giants were held to a 1-1 draw by La Liga title rivals, Atletico Madrid in their Champions League quarter-finals first leg at home. Barcelona is famous for their La Masia academy which has produced super-stars like Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta and Xavi Hernandez.