Fifa has said football clubs will have to meet minimum standards and principles in areas such as infrastructure and financial affairs in order to compete in certain competitions, as it unveiled plans to roll out a global club licensing framework by the end of 2016.
World football’s governing body today (Thursday) said the Fifa Club Licensing system will see it work together with the six regional confederations to improve club football by setting minimum standards in key areas such as stadium safety, fan experience and youth football development.
The Fifa Club Licensing principles are designed to form the basis for the confederations’ own club licensing principles, taking into account the regional specificity of club football. Clubs then need to meet these principles to be eligible for certain competitions, adhering to international statutes, investing in training facilities and agreeing to the independent auditing of finances and greater transparency of ownership.
Fifa director of member associations and development, Thierry Regenass, said: “Stronger clubs mean a stronger foundation for global football. Club licensing is a priority for Fifa’s investment in the game and a crucial part of raising professional standards. We are now working hand-in-hand with the six confederations and our member associations worldwide to implement this blueprint for the future of football.”
The Fifa Club Licensing system requires clubs to commit to minimum standards and principles in five key areas of criteria defined as ‘sporting’, ‘infrastructure’, ‘personnel and administrative’, ‘legal’ and ‘financial’.
Uefa and the AFC have established club licensing programmes in Europe and Asia, while Fifa is working with Concacaf and CAF to develop and implement systems in North America, Central America and the Caribbean, along with Africa. The OFC and Conmebol are scheduled to adopt regional standards in Oceania and South America before the end of 2016.