Barcelona hit with Financial Fair Play fine as three deals are scrutinised

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Barcelona hit with Financial Fair Play fine as three deals are scrutinised
Barcelona hit with Financial Fair Play fine as three deals are scrutinised

Barcelona have been hit with an €800k (£705k) fine for breaching La Liga’s Financial Fair Play rules in relation to three contracts handed out by the club.

The fine comes in relation to the signings of free agents Dani Alves and Andreas Christensen alongside the contract renewal of defender Ronald Araujo at the Camp Nou. The fines are based on Barca’s accounts for the 2021/22 financial year.

Alves joined Barca on a short-term deal until the end of the season in January 2022 while Christensen was brought to the Blaugrana from Chelsea last summer, but the contract falls under last season’s accounts. Araujo’s new deal has yet to be registered due to Barca’s financial situation but the proposal has left them liable to a fine.

As outlined by Catalan media outlet ARA, Barca plan to contest all three charges and will make a legal challenge against each of the sanctions. This would be the latest dispute between the Catalan giants and the league.

It follows a busy year of arrivals at the club with Robert Lewandowski, Ferran Torres, Raphinha, Christensen, Marcos Alonso, Hector Bellerin, Franck Kessie and Jules Kounde among a multitude of arrivals at the Camp Nou.

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That was a result of a series of the club’s self-described ‘economic levers’ which were essentially the sale of club assets and TV rights, which will lead to a reduction of income over the next 25 years. Barca’s finances will take another hit next year as the Camp Nou's redevelopment will see a significant reduction in matchday income.

Barcelona hit with Financial Fair Play fine as three deals are scrutinisedBarcelona will have to move out of their Camp Nou home for the 2023-24 campaign

Have Your Say! Do you think Barcelona’s ‘levers’ were a good or bad idea for the club? Tell us what you think here.

La Liga president Javier Tebas has explained that the club’s use of these so-called ‘levers’ will not be able to have the same impact for subsequent seasons to allow them to strengthen their squad: "The levers have worked for them this season but not for the next one."

Barcelona or any other club will able to utilise economic levers in order to generate revenue, only five percent of the fees can be used for transfers and contracts. Tebas added: "They have to reduce salary mass, they cannot continue with more than €500m (£436m)."

Barca are braced for a fresh financial hit of £17million as their move away from the Camp Nou for the 2023/24 campaign. The city’s Olympic Stadium – also known as the Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys – will play host to Barca’s home matches during the 2023/24 season. With a current capacity of 60,713 seats, the stadium which hosted the 1992 Olympic Games is the second largest in Catalonia and fifth in Spain.

The Olympic Stadium was initially opened in 1929 before being renovated ahead of the Barcelona Olympics in 1992. It last hosted a major football game in September 2008, as England defeated Andorra 2-0 in a World Cup qualifier.

Barca believe the works to the Camp Nou and surrounding area have the potential to generate an additional revenue of £160million per season for the club once complete. Barca’s project – known as Espai Barca – coincides with the club selling the naming rights of their stadium to Spotify.

Colin Millar

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