Soccer Football – World Health Organization & FIFA Press Conference – WHO Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland – October 4, 2019. Director-General of World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and FIFA President Gianni Infantino during the press conference. Image: Reuters

World football governing body FIFA has worked on a series of recommendations and guidelines to address some of the key practical issues arising from the unprecedented COVID-19, which has disrupted all footballing activities worldwide.

With emphasis in regards to player contracts and the transfer system, these actions are done in consultation with different stakeholders through a FIFA task force, including representatives from all levels of football hierarchies worldwide.

A set of principles has been unanimously agreed by the task force, chaired by the FIFA Vice-President and chairman of the FIFA Football Stakeholders Committee Vittorio Montagliani, and was endorsed by the Bureau of the FIFA Council.

Expiry and commencement of player contracts

FIFA proposed for contract extension to players affected by the expiration of contract at the end of the season, until the season actually concludes. This should be in line with the original intention of the parties when the contract was signed and should also preserve sporting integrity and stability.

Consequently, similar principle applies to contracts due to begin when the new season starts, meaning the entry into force of such contracts is delayed until the next season actually does start.

Football employment agreements that can no longer be performed

The pandemic clearly impacted the revenues of clubs, not least since matches cannot be played. Accordingly, FIFA strongly encourages clubs and players to work together to find equitable solutions tailored to these circumstances and agreements during the period when football is suspended.

This includes all aspects of each situation in an even handed manner, including what government measures are there to support clubs and players, whether pay should be deferred or reduced and what insurance coverage may exist, and solutions that are fair and balanced for both sides.

Transfer windows

With regard to transfer windows, it is necessary to adjust the normal regulatory position to the new factual circumstances. Accordingly, FIFA will be flexible and will allow the relevant transfer windows to be moved so they fall between the end of the old season and the start of the new season.

FIFA both hopes and expects the principles are to be followed around the world. Simultaneously, FIFA will try to ensure, where possible, an overall level of coordination and the need to protect the regularity, integrity and proper functioning of competitions, so that the sporting results of any competition are not unfairly disrupted.

(Sources cited from fifa.com and aseanfootball.org for The Bruneian)

Soccer Football – World Health Organization & FIFA Press Conference – WHO Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland – October 4, 2019. Director-General of World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and FIFA President Gianni Infantino during the press conference. Image: Reuters

The Bruneian | KUALA LUMPUR

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