International transfer of minors in football - key takeaways and procedural issues from Chelsea & The FA v. FIFA

Published 20 June 2019 By: Despina Mavromati, Jake Cohen

Junior Football

Following the Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid cases1, Chelsea Football Club (Chelsea) are the latest high-profile club to be sanctioned by FIFA for alleged violations relating to Article 19 of the FIFA Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players (FIFA RSTP) and the international transfers of minor players.

This article will analyse some key procedural issues in international football disputes, as well as look ahead at arguments Chelsea may raise before the Court of Arbitration for Sport (the CAS)

While this matter is ongoing, some important procedural issues have already been raised, and which have practical applicability that goes far beyond the scope of this specific case.

In particular, this matter provides an excellent case study for which some crucial procedural questions can be addressed, specifically:

  • May a party appeal a decision without grounds to the CAS?

  • May a party request provisional measures from the CAS prior to filing its appeal brief?

  • Does a refusal to grant provisional measures by the FIFA Appeals Committee constitute a “final decision” under the relevant regulations?


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Despina Mavromati

Despina Mavromati

Dr. Despina Mavromati, LL.M., is an attorney (Bar of Thessaloniki / Ordre des Avocats Vaudois) practicing in the field of international sports law and arbitration. She is the founder of a Lausanne-based practice (SportLegis Lausanne) and represents athletes, clubs, and sports federations in all aspects of arbitration, trials, and drafting policies.

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Jake Cohen

Jake Cohen

Jake is a Consultant Mills & Reeve and an attorney working on both sides of the pond.

He has worked in the sports team at Mills & Reeve, and also writes about legal, economic, and financial issues in European sport for the Wall Street Journal, ESPN, and other publications. He has been cited as an authority by media outlets all over the world.

At one time, he was a serviceable fly-half.

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