Luis Suarez was given a rousing reception when he was unveiled in his Barcelona shirt after his ban from all footballing activity was lifted. But, in the same week, the Catalan giants had their ban on transfer activity upheld. But the question remains: How was a player who was banned from all footballing activity allowed to move to a club banned from all transfer activity?
Let’s start by looking at the case of Suarez. By now, I am sure we are all aware of the incident leading to his ban. The initial ruling stated that he was forbidden to take part in any matches, training, promotional activities and more; basically a ban on his life.
But if he was banned from all footballing activity, how can he arrange a transfer for himself? He must have signed a contract, and therefore discussed his footballing ability with an official from a football club. Is this not partaking in a football related activity?
Let’s not forget that while Suarez appealed his ban, there was no lifting of his punishment as there was when Barcelona appealed against theirs.
So let’s talk about Barcelona now. They were originally given a transfer ban for signing players under the age of 18 without meeting the qualifying criteria. This was in relation to 10 players they registered between 2009 and 2013.
But they appealed the decision to ban them from transfer activity and as such the ban was lifted. My first question (that I cannot find an answer to) is, why are Barcelona innocent until proven guilty, but Suarez is guilty until proven innocent? Different rules for players than clubs is hardly fair, is it?
They appealed a few months ago. Why has it taken until August, just over 10 days until their transfer deadline, for the case to be heard? Is it because UEFA wanted them to get their transfer dealings done first? I couldn’t possibly comment.
Another strange result of the appeal is when the ban is to be enforced. After this window finishes! That’s right, Barcelona are banned from transfer activity but can still buy players until Aug. 31. The ban starts during the January transfer window and will run until 2016.
However, the European giants have been handed a fine as well. The massive amount of $505,000 (£305,000). This is reportedly what they pay Lionel Messi each week.
So, a player banned from footballing activity has moved to a club banned from buying players. But don’t fret, the Barcelona board will have to look really hard underneath their couch cushions to find the pennies to pay their fine.
Is this footballing authorities turning a blind eye or just blatantly helping the World’s biggest club? You decide, but it is becoming harder and harder to trust the football authorities.