FIFA has got out the ruler and rapped FC Barcelona across the knuckles by banning the Catalan giants from signing players until june 2015.
This blow comes after the recent scandal of Neymar’s transfer and the resigning of president Sandro Rosell and has rocked the club. Recent signings such as Marc Andre Ter Stegen, who will replace Valdés and young starlet Alen Halilovic is said to be in the air.
FIFA’s decision to punish the club for alleged offenses related to the international transfer and registration of under-18s is not the only thing to tarnish the Catalan giant’s reputation. Messi’s brush with the Spanish tax authorities and Neymar’s transfer deal saga has seriously brought into question the club’s impeccable values.
To recap, in less than a year, the Catalan giants have been embroiled in unsavoury court cases: Messi had to cough up €15m to Spain’s “hacienda” or IRS to avoid being accused of tax fraud; ex president Rosell was investigated and later absolved for allegedly interfering with a friendly between Brazil and Portugal with his company; and Spain’s High Court led by judge Ruz, investigated the contracts involved in signing Neymar, which ultimately led to Sandro Rosell’s resignation.
To add fuel to the fire, the club is also the target of fierce criticism for their planned redevelopment of the Nou Camp. Apparently, the club’s board wants the plan to be given the “Green Light” and will be voted on by its members in two day’s time.
Now if we add Gerardo Martino to the mix who is not fully trusted by Barça’s members as he has steered the club away from Guardiola’s style of football, we have a recipe for disaster. The club is in desperate need of some good PR and i don’t know whether new president Bartomeu is the right man for this colossal job.