A guide to Financial Fair Play and the ability of European football clubs to raise finance (Part 1)

Football money
Thursday, 14 May 2020 By Michael Savva , Stuart Bolton

This article was first published in February 2013 and last updated on 14 May 2020.

Since their inception in 2010, UEFA’s Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play Regulations[1] (the UEFA FFP Regulations) have been adapted and the football financing landscape has changed quite significantly. This two part article provides an update on the current scope of the UEFA FFP Regulations and, in particular, how the regulatory landscape provided by the UEFA FFP Regulations (and their domestic equivalents) helps (or hinders) football clubs’ ability to raise finance.   Part 1 of the article, below, examines:

  • The history of the UEFA FFP Regulations
  • The key components of the UEFA FFP Regulations
    • Monitoring period
    • Overdue payables
    • Acceptable deviation and equity contributions
    • Excluded expenditure Amortisation
  • Sanctions by the UEFA Club Financial Control Body
  • Equivalent requirements and sanctions in FIFA’s RSTP
  • Domestic “profitability and sustainability” regulations of the English Premier League and English Football League
  • COVID-19 – the implications of coronavirus

Part 2, (available here), moves on to discuss the implications of the UEFA FFP Regulations on the ability of European football clubs to raise finance and the means by which they can.

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About the Author

Michael Savva

Michael Savva

Michael is a Solicitor in the Asset Finance practice at Watson, Farley & Williams LLP. He specializes in advising clients in relation to sports finance including: loan finance, financing of broadcasting and ticket revenues and the player transfer finance.


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Stuart Bolton

Stuart Bolton

Associate, Watson Farley & Williams (Middle East) LLP

Stuart is an associate in the Assets & Structured Finance group, based in Dubai.  Stuart predominately advises investment banks on complex cross-border asset finance transactions in the aviation sector, and also practises sports finance and general corporate banking.

Since starting with Watson Farley & Williams as a trainee in 2016, Stuart has worked in London, Hamburg and Dubai.

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