FIFA threatens four clubs with points deductions for failing to pay players

ZURICH,  (Reuters) – Four clubs — two in Qatar, one in the United Arab Emirates and one in Iran — have been fined and threatened with points deductions for ignoring orders to pay “overdue” amounts to players, FIFA said yesterday.

World soccer’s governing body said in a statement that Qatar Sports Club and Al-Shamal Sports Club, both based in Qatar, Shabab Al Ahli Dubai (United Arab Emirates) and Saba Qom (Iran) had been given deadlines of between 30 and 90 days to pay up.

Any club which did not meet its deadline would be deducted six points in its domestic league and banned from signing players for the next one or two transfer periods, FIFA added.

The four had failed to comply with previous orders, either from FIFA or following appeals to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), FIFA said. The fines ranged from 15,000 ($15,054) to 30,000 Swiss francs. FIFA said the decisions marked a “new framework” for debtor clubs.

In a separate decision, FIFA announced that La Liga side Atletico Madrid had been fined 52,000 euros ($59,192) for a deal with a player which involved “third-party influence”.

FIFA said the Spanish club entered into a contract which “enabled a third party to influence the club’s independence in employment and transfer-related matters”, which breached transfer and players’ status rules.

FIFA policy on third-party ownership bans either clubs or players from entering into economic rights agreements with third-party investors. Frequently such deals involve outside investors retaining or gaining a share in ownership of a player. ($1 = 0.9964 Swiss francs) ($1 = 0.8785 euros)

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