FC Barcelona fans won’t be happy with this bit of news.
According to a story via ESPN FC, the world soccer governing body FIFA, has handed down some severe punishment to the Spanish giants for violating transfer laws.
Barcelona have been banned from making signings for two consecutive transfer windows after failing to abide by rules governing transfers of players under 18, FIFA announced on Wednesday.
FIFA carried out an investigation last year and found the club as well as the Spanish football federation (RFEF) guilty of several violations in relation to rules governing international transfers and registering foreign players.
The world governing body did not explicitly state when the punishment was due to start, but if imposed immediately it would prevent Barca making signings in summer 2014 or winter 2015.
If Barcelona appeal the decision (and that is pretty much a sure bet), then the ban will be delayed for at least one period which will enable the reigning La Liga champs to bring in players before it takes effect.
With that being said, this will still be a big blow to Barca, as being unable to refresh their squad for two transfer periods while their rivals improve will hurt them competitively. However, they are known to have an academy filled with talented youngsters so they’ll have to throw them into the deep end and hope some of them can swim.