Arroyo: "Our defence strategy foresaw that this could end with the CAS"

The Club has asked FIFA to provide the grounds for its verdict announced yesterday, an essential requirement before presenting an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport

FC Barcelona have been quick to respond to the ratification of the sanction pronounced yesterday by the FIFA Appeal Committee regarding the breach of regulations concerning the transfer and registration of children under 18 years of age. Minutes after the announcement, the Club issued a public statement explaining that it shall continue to defend its interests before the highest legal authority for sport, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (TAS).

This morning, Club vice-president and Head of Communications and Media, Manel Arroyo, evaluated the situation and told the Club’s media that its defence strategy had considered the possibility of the sanction being ratified and so plans had already been made plans to recur to the CAS. The legal services are therefore already working on the case, and are now waiting for FIFA to provide the grounds for its resolution, which were requested earlier today.

In compliance with the resolution, for the next 90 days the Club will be working with FIFA to analyse the administrative situation of each of the children that are included in the enquiry, in order to resolve any cases in which it is understood that there has been a breach of regulations.

The vice-president insists that the Board of Directors will not be discussing matters of a sporting nature, but that with the signings made this summer and the promising players in the reserve and youth teams, the team’s future is guaranteed.

Arroyo also commented on how, thanks to its Masia model, FC Barcelona has set new standards in world football, and that this model is as valid as it always has been and will continue to be one of the Club’s priorities.

Statements by vice-president Manel Arroyo:

“There was always a chance that the FIFA Appeals Committee would reject our appeal. It seemed like the evidence and arguments that we presented to FIFA would be enough, but we had considered the possibility of the Committee ratifying FIFA’s sentence. Obviously, when faced by a situation like this you have to take all possible scenarios into account, so our strategy was designed with the possibility of going to the CAS in mind. The legal services are already working on all the details.”

“All of our sporting plans have been made with a scenario like this in mind. Some of the signings have been made as foresights regarding the future needs of the team. The Board of Directors cannot discuss sporting issues, but we feel that with the players we already have here we have enough to continue going forward”.

“The Masia model has in no way been put under question or in danger. Quite the opposite, it has been strengthened. We have set standards for the training of young footballers and are working for the wording of the regulation to be adapted to such a spirit. Both the president and the people in international bodies are working for this to happen”.

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