The “big” clubs sure do get all the breaks and favorable decisions — just like the rich get richer — don’t they?
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If you subscribed to that line of thinking, it will come as no surprise to you that Barcelona are appealing a FIFA-imposed transfer ban in hopes of immediately registering Turkish midfielder Arda Turan, who was signed during the summer despite the La Liga club being barred from registering new players for two transfer windows (January and summer 2015).
Not that anyone would put it past Barca, but surely they’re not brazen enough to simply request a punishment, which was brought about by their own wrongdoing, be rescinded, just because they want it to be, right?
Indeed, the Catalan club’s lawyers may have found a way to turn a real negative — the torn anterior cruciate ligament of Brazilian midfielder Rafinha — into a quasi-positive. When Rafinha tore the ACL in his right now during last week’s UEFA Champions League clash with Roma, it opened up a possible loophole for Barca to exploit.
Once the registration period closes — Aug. 31 in this case — a club can no longer register new players to its competitive squads until the next window begins — Jan. 1, coinciding with the January transfer window, when Barca’s ban will no longer be in effect. However, when a registered player suffers and injury that will keep him out five months or more, a club is allowed to replace him on the registered roster.
In theory, the ban has already expired, given that two windows have passed. If that is in fact the way FIFA and eventually (probably) the court system sees it, Turan, who signed from Atletico Madrid for $38 million plus add-ons, could make his Barcelona debut sooner rather than later. Barca have officially approached the Spanish FA, who will seek further clarification from FIFA.
See, even when something bad happens to the big boys of world football, something good still comes of it.