Asser International Sports Law Blog

Our International Sports Law Diary
The Asser International Sports Law Centre is part of the T.M.C. Asser Instituut

The Olympic Agenda 2020: The devil is in the implementation!

The 40 recommendations of the Olympic Agenda 2020 are out! First thought: one should not underplay the 40 recommendations, they constitute (on paper at least) a potential leap forward for the IOC. The media will focus on the hot stuff: the Olympic channel, the pluri-localisation of the Games, or their dynamic format. More importantly, and to some extent surprisingly to us, however, the IOC has also fully embraced sustainability and good governance. Nonetheless, the long-term legacy of the Olympic Agenda 2020 will hinge on the IOC’s determination to be true to these fundamental commitments. Indeed, the devil is always in the implementation, and the laudable intents of some recommendations will depend on future political choices by Olympic bureaucrats. 

For those interested in human rights and democracy at (and around) the Olympics, two aspects are crucial: the IOC’s confession that the autonomy of sport is intimately linked to the quality of its governance standards and the central role the concept of sustainability is to play in the bidding process and the host city contract.  More...

UEFA’s tax-free Euro 2016 in France: State aid or no State aid?

Last week, the French newspaper Les Echos broke the story that UEFA (or better said its subsidiary) will be exempted from paying taxes in France on revenues derived from Euro 2016. At a time when International Sporting Federations, most notably FIFA, are facing heavy criticisms for their bidding procedures and the special treatment enjoyed by their officials, this tax exemption was not likely to go unnoticed. The French minister for sport, confronted with an angry public opinion, responded by stating that tax exemptions are common practice regarding international sporting events. The former French government agreed to this exemption. In fact, he stressed that without it “France would never have hosted the competition and the Euro 2016 would have gone elsewhere”. More...

The New Olympic Host City Contract: Human Rights à la carte? by Ryan Gauthier, PhD Researcher (Erasmus University Rotterdam)

Three weeks ago, I gave a talk for a group of visiting researchers at Harvard Law School on the accountability of the IOC for human rights abuses caused by hosting Olympic Games. On the day of that talk, Human Rights Watch announced that the International Olympic Committee (“IOC”) would insert new language into the Host City Contract presumably for the 2022 Olympic Games onwards. The new language apparently requires the parties to the contract to:

“take all necessary measures to ensure that development projects necessary for the organization of the Games comply with local, regional, and national legislation, and international agreements and protocols, applicable in the host country with regard to planning, construction, protection of the environment, health, safety, and labour laws.”More...

The UN and the IOC: Beautiful friendship or Liaison Dangereuse?

The IOC has trumpeted it worldwide as a « historical milestone »: the United Nations has recognised the sacrosanct autonomy of sport. Indeed, the Resolution A/69/L.5 (see the final draft) adopted by the General Assembly on 31 October states that it  “supports the independence and autonomy of sport as well as the mission of the International Olympic Committee in leading the Olympic movement”. This is a logical conclusion to a year that has brought the two organisations closer than ever. In April, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon appointed former IOC President, Jacques Rogge, Special Envoy for Youth Refugees and Sport. At this occasion, the current IOC President, Thomas Bach, made an eloquent speech celebrating a “historic step forward to better accomplish our common mission for humanity” and a memorandum understanding was signed between the UN and the IOC. This is all sweet and well, but is there something new under the sun?More...

Image Rights in Professional Basketball (Part I): The ‘in-n-out rimshot’ of the Basketball Arbitral Tribunal to enforce players’ image rights contracts. By Thalia Diathesopoulou

A warning addressed to fans of French teams featuring in the recently launched video game NBA 2K15: Hurry up! The last jump ball for Strasbourg and Nanterre in NBA 2K 15 may occur earlier than expected. The French Labour Union of Basketball (Syndicat National du Basket, SNB) is dissatisfied that Euroleague and 2K Games did not ask (nor paid) for its permission before including the two teams of Pro A in the NBA 2K15 edition. What is at issue? French basketball players’ image rights have been transferred to SNB, which intends to start proceedings before the US Courts against 2K Games requesting 120.000 euros for unauthorized use of the players’ image rights. SNB is clear: it is not about the money, but rather to defend the players’ rights.[1] Strasbourg and Nanterre risk to “warm up” the virtual bench if this litigation goes ahead. 

Source: http://forums.nba-live.com/viewtopic.php?f=149&t=88661&start=250 More...

Sport and EU Competition Law: uncharted territories - (II) Mandatory player release systems with no compensation for clubs. By Ben Van Rompuy

The European Commission’s competition decisions in the area of sport, which set out broad principles regarding the interface between sports-related activities and EU competition law, are widely publicized. As a result of the decentralization of EU competition law enforcement, however, enforcement activity has largely shifted to the national level. Since 2004, national competition authorities (NCAs) and national courts are empowered to fully apply the EU competition rules on anti-competitive agreements (Article 101 TFEU) and abuse of a dominant position (Article 102 TFEU).

Even though NCAs and national courts have addressed a series of interesting competition cases (notably dealing with the regulatory aspects of sport) during the last ten years, the academic literature has largely overlooked these developments. This is unfortunate since all stakeholders (sports organisations, clubs, practitioners, etc.) increasingly need to learn from pressing issues arising in national cases and enforcement decisions. In a series of blog posts we will explore these unknown territories of the application of EU competition law to sport.

In this second installment of this blog series, we discuss a recent judgment of the regional court (Landgericht) of Dortmund finding that the International Handball Federation (IHF)’s mandatory release system of players for matches of national teams without compensation infringes EU and German competition law.[1] More...

The CAS Ad Hoc Division in 2014: Business as usual? – Part.1: The Jurisdiction quandary

The year is coming to an end and it has been a relatively busy one for the CAS Ad Hoc divisions. Indeed, the Ad Hoc division was, as usual now since the Olympic Games in Atlanta in 1996[1], settling  “Olympic” disputes during the Winter Olympics in Sochi. However, it was also, and this is a novelty, present at the Asian Games 2014 in Incheon.  Both divisions have had to deal with seven (published) cases in total (four in Sochi and three in Incheon). The early commentaries available on the web (here, here and there), have been relatively unmoved by this year’s case law. Was it then simply ‘business as usual’, or is there more to learn from the 2014 Ad Hoc awards? Two different dimensions of the 2014 decisions by the Ad Hoc Division seem relevant to elaborate on : the jurisdiction quandary (part. 1) and the selection drama (part. 2). More...

Sports Politics before the CAS II: Where does the freedom of speech of a Karate Official ends? By Thalia Diathesopoulou

On 6 October 2014, the CAS upheld the appeal filed by the former General Secretary of the World Karate Federation (WKF), George Yerolimpos, against the 6 February 2014 decision of the WKF Appeal Tribunal. With the award, the CAS confirmed a six-months membership suspension imposed upon the Appellant by the WKF Disciplinary Tribunal.[1] At a first glance, the case at issue seems to be an ordinary challenge of a disciplinary sanction imposed by a sports governing body. Nevertheless, this appeal lies at the heart of a highly acrimonious political fight for the leadership of the WKF, featuring two former ‘comrades’:  Mr Yerolimpos and Mr Espinos (current president of WKF). As the CAS puts it very lucidly, "this is a story about a power struggle within an international sporting body"[2], a story reminding the Saturn devouring his son myth.

This case, therefore, brings the dirty laundry of sports politics to the fore. Interestingly enough, this time the CAS does not hesitate to grapple with the political dimension of the case. More...

The new “Arrangement” between the European Commission and UEFA: A political capitulation of the EU

Yesterday, the European Commission stunned the European Sports Law world when it announced unexpectedly that it had signed a “partnership agreement with UEFA named (creatively): ‘The Arrangement for Cooperation between the European Commission and the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA)’. The press release indicates that this agreement is to “commit the two institutions to working together regularly in a tangible and constructive way on matters of shared interest”. The agreement was negotiated (as far as we know) secretly with UEFA. Despite recent meetings between EU Commissioner for sport Vassiliou and UEFA President Platini, the eventuality of such an outcome was never evoked. It is very unlikely that third-interested-parties (FIFPro, ECA, Supporters Direct etc.) were consulted in the process of drafting this Arrangement. This surprising move by an outgoing Commission will be analysed in a three-ponged approach. First, we will discuss the substance of the Arrangement (I). Thereafter, we will consider its potential legal value under EU law (II). Finally, and maybe more importantly, we will confront the political relevance of the agreement (III).  More...

Sports Politics before the CAS: Early signs of a ‘constitutional’ role for CAS? By Thalia Diathesopoulou

It took almost six months, a record of 26 witnesses and a 68 pages final award for the CAS to put an end to a long-delayed, continuously acrimonious and highly controversial presidential election for the Football Association of Thailand (FAT). Worawi Makudi can sit easy and safe on the throne of the FAT for his fourth consecutive term, since the CAS has dismissed the appeal filed by the other contender, Virach Chanpanich.[1]

Interestingly enough, it is one of the rare times that the CAS Appeal Division has been called to adjudicate on the fairness and regularity of the electoral process of a sports governing body. Having been established as the supreme judge of sports disputes, by reviewing the electoral process of international and national sports federations the CAS adds to its functions a role akin to the one played by a constitutional court in national legal systems. It seems that members of international and national federations increasingly see the CAS as an ultimate guardian of fairness and validity of internal electoral proceedings. Are these features - without prejudice to the CAS role as an arbitral body- the early sign of the emergence of a Constitutional Court for Sport? More...

Asser International Sports Law Blog | Football Intermediaries: Would a European centralized licensing system be a sustainable solution? - By Panagiotis Roumeliotis

Asser International Sports Law Blog

Our International Sports Law Diary
The Asser International Sports Law Centre is part of the T.M.C. Asser Instituut

Football Intermediaries: Would a European centralized licensing system be a sustainable solution? - By Panagiotis Roumeliotis

Editor's note: Panagiotis Roumeliotis holds an LL.B. degree from National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece and an LL.M. degree in European and International Tax Law from University of Luxembourg. He is qualified lawyer in Greece and is presently working as tax advisor with KPMG Luxembourg while pursuing, concomitantly, an LL.M. in International Sports Law at Sheffield Hallam University, England. His interest lies in the realm of tax and sports law. He may be contacted by e-mail at ‘p.roumeliotis@hotmail.com’.


Introduction

The landmark Bosman Ruling triggered the Europeanization of the labour market for football players by banning nationality quotas. In turn, in conjunction with the boom in TV revenues, this led to a flourishing transfer market in which players’ agents or intermediaries play a pivotal role, despite having a controversial reputation.

As a preliminary remark, it is important to touch upon the fiduciary duty of sports agents towards their clients. The principal-agent relationship implies that the former employs the agent so as to secure the best employment and/or commercial opportunities. Conversely, the latter is expected to act in the interest of the player as their relationship should be predicated on trust and confidence, as much was made clear in the English Court of Appeal case of Imageview Management Ltd v. Kelvin Jack. Notably, agents are bound to exercise the utmost degree of good faith, honesty and loyalty towards the players.[1]

At the core of this blog lies a comparative case study of the implementation of the FIFA Regulations on working with intermediaries (hereinafter “FIFA RWI”) in eight European FAs covering most of the transfers during the mercato. I will then critically analyze the issues raised by the implementation of the RWI and, as a conclusion, offer some recommendations.


FIFA RWI

In 2015, FIFA sought a new reform of football agents’ activity and adopted regulations on dealing with intermediaries[2] that are defined as “a natural or legal person who, for a fee or free of charge, represents players and/or clubs in negotiations with a view to concluding an employment contract or represents clubs in negotiations with a view to concluding a transfer agreement”.[3]

As solemnly illustrated in the Preamble, their purported aim is to bolster high ethical standards for the relations between clubs, players and third parties as well as enable proper control and transparency as regards player transfers.[4]  In a nutshell, FIFA devolved its regulatory powers to the national federations whereas it will just monitor the regulations’ proper implementation.[5]


Case studies of the national implementation of the RWI in eight countries

The concrete impact of the new RWI can be duly chartered through an examination of European FAs’ implementation (i.e. Belgium, England, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain) as Europe possesses by far the biggest transfer market globally.

Registration

The registration process is a conditio sine qua non for agents. Based on a literal interpretation of the RWI, agents’ registration should occur on a transactional basis[6] and it is conferred upon clubs and players to provide to the respective FA the intermediary declaration and representation contract.[7] As FAs are empowered to go beyond the minimum requirements enshrined in FIFA’s RWI[8] in some instances they have implemented different requirements.

Burdensome character

For purposes of tracking and tracing their activity, agents should, subject to signing and filing the so-called “intermediary declaration”, be registered with the FA where they exercise their profession. Ergo, the plethora of administrative rules simultaneously applied constitute glaring obstacles, as they allegedly impede the provision of services on behalf of agents[9] and, on top of that, the enhanced amount of registration fees[10] is burdensome. The net result seems to be that a “fragmented and multi-tiered system”[11] does not seem compatible with EU law. It is more likely than not that by curtailing the development of agents’ business, EU law (i.e. restraint on competition, free movement of services) is infringed.

Lack of qualification assessment 

Apart from France[12], where candidates must sit a written examination and Spain[13], where a personal interview with the respective FA takes place, in principle, such assessments are not considered. 

The self-certification of impeccable reputation does not guarantee the quality of the services rendered by agents and the possession of the requisite skills thereto. In fact, the EU Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee for Professional Football confirmed a decreased quality of said services. The obligation to undertake a serious examination should, a fortiori, be taken seriously into account and put into practice as it will offer guarantees of objectivity and transparency.

Of course one could contradict that agents derive their value from their extensive network of contacts and market knowledge;[14] instead of their education or license. Nevertheless, qualitative criteria need to be set as a condition for eventual registration, as players should only have the option to gravitate towards agents that can deploy them quality services. This is further fortified by the fact that football has become a sophisticated business, whereby complex contracts plausibly require qualified assistance so as to achieve a better protection of players’ rights.[15]

Remuneration

In theory, agents should be entitled to receive remuneration so long as they have brought about the employment contract/transfer agreement for which they have been engaged. The mere introduction of the parties to a contract, without evidence of contribution to said conclusion, is not sufficient[16] as the entitlement to commission crystalizes upon the provision of services.

Reality bears witness to the fact that the recommended 3% benchmark cap inserted in the FIFA RWI[17], albeit being the apple of discord in recent discussions, has not been interpreted by FAs as a “must”. Only 4/8[18] FAs have transposed such recommendation in their domestic RWI while the others[19] have ignored it.

A glance at current numbers proves that, in spite of the recommended cap, agents’ fees have swelled; as from 2013, UEFA clubs have spent 97.2% (i.e. USD 1.54 billion) of the commissions pocketed by intermediaries globally. Going forward, it is indicative that as per the UEFA Report for the FY 2016, the average commission rate amounted to 13% in Belgium, England, Italy and Portugal, 9% in France, 15% in Germany, 12% in the Netherlands and 8% in Spain. The above figures succinctly demonstrate that FIFA’s recommendation has not led to a de facto limitation of the remuneration paid to agents. This is also confirmed by a report for the EC that outlined the increase in agents’ fees following FIFA’s deregulation.

Benchmark cons

Potential low remuneration cap would, unavoidably, incite agents to breach their fiduciary duty and favour their own interests. Exempli gratia, they would rather clinch deals in FAs that contemplate higher commission fees, even if it is contrary to the best interests of their client’s career. Furthermore, reprehensible practices would definitely take place since agents’ commission and players’ remuneration function inversely (i.e. the more agents receive, the less players earn), while it is also likely that agents would be discouraged to provide high quality services.

In the same vein, it could lead to collision with EU law. As a matter of fact, it has already raised EU competition law concerns as some have considered it a disproportionate encroachment on agents’ economic freedom, thus, infringing Articles 101 and 102 TFEU.

Benchmark pros

 On the flip side, I would like to play devil’s advocate going forward. Should the 3% cap on fees apply, this would ward off “agents” whose sole purpose is to make “quick and dirty” money. Therefore, the 3% cap could work as an indirect assessment of the ones who are worth of being agents.

Conflicts of interests 

From the outset of the eventual transaction, players/clubs should endeavor to assure that no conflicts of interest exist.[20] 6 out of 8 FAs[21] have transposed ad litteram the provision stipulating the right of intermediaries to represent multiple parties to a transaction, so long as they have articulated in advance potential conflicts of interest and received written consent by all parties involved. The CSKA Sofia v. Loic Bensaid case could be considered as a precursor to this provision, in which it was stressed that an agent who represents both player and club does not commit fraud so long as he has made the situation transparent to the parties.[22]

In my view, said provision ostensibly solves potential conflicts of interest but de facto goes against agents’ fiduciary duty and ineluctably leads to such conflicts. By way of comment, should an agent represent both the player and the destination club, he would have to act in a neutral manner, which will adversely affect the player’s interests. In order to maintain healthy relationships with the club so as to facilitate future transactions, it is more likely that he will not seek the maximum salary possible for the player. Conversely, should the agent represent both the player and the club of origin, one can easily understand that a higher transfer fee reduces the player’s salary and vice versa.

In my view, with such provision, unwittingly or not, an own-goal has been inflicted as FAs are not incentivized to crack down on potential conflicts of interest. At least, if the French[23]/Portuguese[24] practice is not followed (i.e. dual representation is prohibited), the English model[25] could be an attractive solution. Notably, the possibility to seek independent legal advice should be construed as a necessary requirement that will safeguard players’ sporting/financial interests from being compromised.

Minors

Almost all FAs outlawed payments when the player is a minor.[26] Portugal[27] seems to have applied a more stringent standard (i.e. representation is totally forbidden), while Italy[28] does not stricto sensu prohibit such remuneration.

One might be tempted to conclude that outlawing payments is commendable but such perception is erroneous as the premise behind it goes against the players’ interests:

  • Agents not receiving consideration in exchange for their services would most likely not provide the best advice for their client, as, “good advice comes at a price”[29]
  • Agents would have a vested interest to tie up youngsters for many years, which might, in turn, work at their expense, as the former might seek to capitalize their investment in the players as soon as they get 18 years old. As submitted, when it comes to minors, unscrupulous agents can go “forum shopping” and seek to conclude a representation contract in the most favorable jurisdiction,[30] i.e. the one that does not limit the duration of said contract.

The foregoing should be read in conjunction with the fact that in modern football there are lots of talented young players with potential to become a bone of contention for agents. Further to this, due account should be taken of the fact that UEFA’s “home grown player rule” and the UEFA Financial Fair Play Regulations push clubs to invest in youngsters and this renders their circulation in the market more common than in the past.

The statistics provided by FIFA ITMS show that minors are the category of players who have most often used an agent, in 17.6% of the concluded international transfers against 15.2% and 14.5% between 18-25 and 26-32 years old, respectively. Therefore, it borders on the absurd that agents cannot be remunerated when engaged in transactions involving minors.

On top of that, higher thresholds ought to have been imposed i.e. the representation contract should have a limited term and for this, a useful inspiration could be derived from the case of Proactive Sports Management v Wayne Rooney, where it was decided that the eight-year image rights representation agreement[31] constituted an unreasonable restraint of trade.

Duration of the Representation Contract

FIFA’s RWI left a normative vacuum by not including a provision on the maximum duration of a representation contract. However, my comparative study shows that 5/8 FAs[32] impose a maximum 2 year term on the representation contract.

Such a limit protects not only the players’ but also the clubs’ interests against potential abuses involved in the engagement of agents for long periods.[33] Furthermore, it avoids conflicts pertaining to restraint of trade as the absence of limits could lead to players being tied to their agent for a disproportionate period of time.

However, since exclusivity (i.e. maximum duration of contract) is not prescribed in FIFA RWI, this could imply that they provide a safe harbor to players not to be contractually bound for a predetermined period of time. As submitted, this grants the players more bargaining power and would, indirectly, force agents to act in the best interests of their clients.[34]


Harmonization at European level

It is crystal clear that multiple national disparities exist in the regulation of agents. Hence, I believe a streamlined uniform regulatory framework is needed at the European level and, as such, could be put in place by UEFA’s FAs.

FAs Partnership

As football’s transfer money and underlying intermediaries’ commission fees are mostly concentrated in Europe, it should be underscored that consolidated RWI at the level of all European FAs would provide a more potent regulatory space and countervail “FIFA’s regulatory relinquishment”.

As FIFA switched the onus to FAs, some of them could come together and become embroiled in enforcing an enhanced monitoring system and stricter conditions of access to the profession. This has also been supported by the EU Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee for Professional Football, which formulated that such harmonized European policy is the desirable next step for a better regulatory oversight of agents. Such partnership could be a laudable response to the calls for a centralized and harmonized mandatory licensing system. It should be done in cooperation with the EFAA, so as to take into account the agents’ perspective and likely facilitate adherence to the regulations.

In this respect, it would be prudent to follow the examples of other Sports Associations. For example, FIBA when formulating effective regulations pertaining to agents promoted harmonization while involving the agents through consultation of AEBA. Pursuant to the latest EC Report, the National Basketball Players Association (“NBPA”) Regulations could also be considered as an example to follow, as they enhance the “professionalization” of agents and are based on a mandatory licensing system while setting accomplished higher education as an indispensable condition. The NFL, on the other side of the Atlantic, is also an interesting example as it requires a university degree or sufficient negotiating experience of minimum 7 years.

As it is generally felt that the agents’ business is “unethical, complex and deceptive”, thus stringent conditions should be imposed to enter the profession. A qualitative selection process is indispensable. Players must be able to rely on agents equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge. FAs should look back at the Piau case where the compulsory licensing system was duly endorsed as legitimate by the then Court of First Instance of the EU, inter alia, on the basis that it was necessary to introduce “professionalism and ethical standards to protect players whose careers are short”.

UEFA

On a separate note, UEFA, as it claims to operate in a spirit of consensus with all its stakeholders, has to be the leading frontrunner of a harmonised regulation. In the framework of Article 165 TFEU and UEFA’s conditional supervised autonomy[35], this could be done in dialogue with the EC that possesses coordination competence with regard to sport, so as to ensure that potential new regulations can resist challenges on grounds of restraint of trade and alleged infringements of EU law. The Arrangement for Cooperation signed by the UEFA and EC earlier in February 2018 could be a good starting point going forward.


Conclusions

It is unequivocal that FIFA’s RWI advent has had as a main repercussion the deregulation of the industry, or better put, the granting of autonomy to the FAs to regulate said industry using the minimum standards as the cornerstone. The case study, though, evidences that important disparities exist between crucial provisions of the various European FAs’ RWI, which leads to compounding practical and ethical problems and to higher risks of forum shopping. 

It is forthwith conspicuous that such disparities create challenges, which could be duly faced, first and foremost, by accepting that agents are inherent to the mercato and, as previously alluded, by taking account of their fiduciary duty. Ergo, it is contingent upon European FAs, in the framework of UEFA, to cooperate so as to adopt a robust unified regime that will bring forward sweeping and streamlined changes to the profession. To do so, agents’ should be consulted and respected, as in the modern era of professional football, “they are the oil that keeps the wheels of international football in motion.”[36]


[1] WALTER T. CHAMPION, “Attorneys Qua Sports Agents: An Ethical Conundrum” (1997) 7 Marquette Sports Law Journal 349, 350.

[2] The term “agent” will be used, as it constitutes the international jargon.

[3] 2015 FIFA RWI, Definition of an intermediary.

[4] 2015 FIFA RWI, Preamble.

[5] 2015 FIFA RWI, Article 10.

[6] JUAN DE DIOS CRESPO and PAOLO TORCHETTI, “Limiting intermediaries’ fees and enhancing fiduciary duty” [2018] World Sports Advocate 11, 12.

[7] 2015 FIFA RWI, Articles 3 and 6(1).

[8] 2015 FIFA RWI, Preamble.

[9] JUAN DE DIOS CRESPO and PAOLO TORCHETTI, “FIFA’s new Regulations on Working with Intermediaries” [2015] Football Legal 36.

[10] Annex 11 to the URBSFA Regulations, Article 4 [1.3]; The FA website, Intermediaries Registration [online]. Available at: http://www.thefa.com/football-rules-governance/policies/intermediaries/intermediaries-registration [accessed on 1 May 2018]; Code du Sport, Article L.222-7; FIGC, Regolamento per i Servizi di Procuratore Sportivo, Art. 4(1), 4(3) and 5; KNVB Regulations, Article 2(6); PFF Regulations, Article 7(2); RFEF Regulations, Article 7.

[11] JUAN DE DIOS CRESPO and PAOLO TORCHETTI, “FIFA’s new Regulations on Working with Intermediaries” [2015] Football Legal 37; ORNELLA DESIREE BELLIA “FIFA Regulations on Working with Intermediaries: Analysis from the perspective of the clubs” in MICHELE COLUCCI (ed) The FIFA Regulations on Working with Intermediaries, Implementation at National Level (2nd ed., International Sports Law and Policy Bulletin 1/2016) 57-66, 59.

[12] Code du Sport, Article L.222-7.

[13] RFEF Regulations, Article 4.

[14] IAN LYNAM and JONATHAN ELLIS, “Players’ Agents”, in ADAM LEWIS QC and JONATHAN TAYLOR (eds), Sports: Law and Practice (3rd edition, BLOOMSBURY 2016), 1418 – 1478, 1420.

[15] SALEH ALOBEILDI, “FIFA’s RWI – Historical overview” [2015] Football Legal 30.

[16] CAS 2006/A//1019 G. v. O., award of 5 December 2006 (anonymized) [11].

[17] 2015 FIFA RWI, Article 7(3).

[18] Annex 11 to the URBSFA Regulations, Article 8 [3]; FA Regulations, Rule C (11); FIGC, Regolamento per i Servizi di Procuratore Sportivo, Art. 6; KNVB Regulations, Article 8(6).

[19] Code du Sport, Article L. 222-17 ; DFB Regulations, Section 7.1-7.2; PFF Regulations, Article 11 ; In Spain no remuneration cap has been prescribed.

[20] 2015 FIFA RWI, Article 2(2).

[21] Annex 11 to the URBSFA Regulations, Article 9 [3]; FA Regulations, Rule E (2) a-c; DFB Regulations, Article 8; FIGC, Regolamento per i Servizi di Procuratore Sportivo, Art. 7; KNBV Regulations, Article 4; RFEF Regulations, Article 12.

[22] CAS 2012/A/2988, PFC CSKA Sofia v. Loic Bensaid (award of 14 June 2013) paras 74, 82 and 101.

[23] Code du Sport, Article L.222-17.

[24] PFF Regulations, Article 5(3).

[25] FA Regulations, Rule E (2) d.

[26] Annex 11 to the URBSFA Regulations, Article 8 [8]; FA Regulations, Art. C (10) ; Code du Sport, Article L.222-5; DFB Regulations, Art. 7.7; KNVB Regulations, Article 8(7); RFEF Regulations, Article 10.

[27] PFF Regulations, Article 5(4); The Physical Activity and Sports Basic Law (“PASBL”) or Law no. 5/2007, Article 37(2).

[28] SALVATORE CIVALE and MICHELE COLUCCI, “The FIGC Regulations on Intermediaries” in MICHELE COLUCCI (ed) The FIFA Regulations on Working with Intermediaries, Implementation at National Level (2nd ed., International Sports Law and Policy Bulletin 1/2016) 329-338, 335.

[29] JEAN-MICHEL MARMAYOU, “EU Law and Principles applied to FIFA Regulations” in MICHELE COLUCCI (ed) The FIFA Regulations on Working with Intermediaries, Implementation at National Level (2nd ed., International Sports Law and Policy Bulletin 1/2016) 75-112, 91.

[30] ROBERTO BRANCO MARTINS, “FIFA’s RWI – Agents’ perspective” [2015] Football Legal 50.

[31] The judge supported his argumentation by making reference to the obsolete FIFA Regulations, which stipulated that representation contracts were limited to a maximum two-year term, attaching to said agreement a unique character.

[32] FA Regulations, Art. B (10); FIGC, Regolamento per i Servizi di Procuratore Sportivo, Art. 5; PFF Regulations, Article 9(2) §c; RFEF Regulations, Article 8(4).

[33] CAS 2008/A/1665, J. v. Udinese Calcio S.p.A, (award of 19 May 2009) para 54.

[34] WIL VAN MEGEN, “The FIFA Regulations on Intermediaries: The players’ point of view” in MICHELE COLUCCI (ed) The FIFA Regulations on Working with Intermediaries, Implementation at National Level (2nd ed., International Sports Law and Policy Bulletin 1/2016) 67-74, 74.

[35] BORJA GARCIA, “Sport governance after the White Paper: the demise of the European model?” (2009) 1:3 International Journal of Sport Policy 267; It was firstly stated in the Meca-Medina case [47]: “restrictions imposed by sports federations must be limited to what is necessary to ensure the proper conduct of competitive sport”.

[36] ROBERTO BRANCO MARTINS and GREGOR REITER, “Players’ Agents: Past, Present … Future?” (2010) 1-2 The International Sports Law Journal 7.

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