Over an extended period, (but more so over the last fortnight, or so) we have been asked by many people what will be the affect to us of FIFA effectively ‘axing’ the licensed agents rule in football.

This has been asked by many, whether they be clients, players, coaches, clubs, providers, business associates or even other agents : and to be quite honest i doubt very much whether anyone outside of FIFA and the National FA’s can answer the question much more than just an opinion.

The fact remains that all English FA licensed agents (and prospective candidates) were informed approximately a week before any mention of the ‘official’ announcement in a mainstream British newspaper. Although it has been common knowledge for some time that changes were ‘on the cards’ with a FIFA review announced some time ago of the licensed agents regulations.

THE FACTS are that, no definitive statement has been made by FIFA as to what the changes will be only that :

“The 2009 FIFA Congress declared its support for an ‘in-depth reform of the player’s agents system through a new approach based on the concept of intermediaries’.  According to information recently received by The FA from FIFA, on the basis of the proposals of the FIFA working group which was assigned the task to tackle the issue, it may be that the current players’ agents licensing provisions will be abolished and replaced by a different system.  It is likely that under these proposals the current requirements for individuals to become licensed agents will no longer apply.”

– all that has been stated is that the current provisions will be abolished “and replaced by a different system” – who knows the new system and licensing methods may well be far more stringent than the existing measures, then again it may just be an effective means of ‘side stepping’ an issue that some elements are determined to say is ‘impossible to police’ and rather than tackle the misdemenours and the ‘unlicensed agents’ the regulations will be changed to suit the current situation.

If it is to believed that that 70% of international transfers concluded by non-licensed agents , as was stated in a recent BBC online article : “Fifa to ‘axe licensed agent rule'” surely a change in the rules is necessary and should be welcomed by all of those associated with the sport.

So where does it leave Chiron Sports and Media as licensed football agents, and at this point in time i wont say it doesnt affect us, as it does.
However the primary foundations of how Chiron was set up was to be ethical and to operate in the best interests of the clients long term career and life. Whilst adhering to the rules both of FIFA and our parent association the FA, in fact far stronger rules would be ‘more than welcome’ on our part, as long as common sense prevails in how those rules are implemented and that we cant have ‘one rule for one and one for another’.

What MAY happen ? – If it was our personal preference as to what may be introduced to regulate agents more effectively, then one concept could be for FIFA to disseminate a core set of regulations to the Confederations and subsequently they could then disseminate the core regulations plus their own subset to their member Associations.  Thus leaving the way for the association in question to issue licenses for those operating on their territory, something the English FA has done effectively with the ‘Overseas Agent’ regulations for some time.

Under the current regulations every player should have an ‘player passport’ covering there career, why not the same for agents with each association giving them permission to operate on that territory, then such observations like 70% of international transfers concluded by non-licensed agents may become a thing of the past.

Dates for the diary then to ‘keep our ear to the ground’ are :

  • December 2010 – FIFA working group present their recommendations/conclusions
  • May 2011 – New regulations should be implemented
  • October 2011 – old regulations fazed out

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