FIFA have hit Chelsea FC with a shock ban, that prevents the club from signing any new players until January 2011.
The news come about after it was revealed that Chelsea young French starlet, Gael Kakuta, was "induced" to breach his contract with his previous club Lens.
FIFA said in a statement: "The French club had lodged a claim with FIFA seeking compensation for breach of contract from the player and requesting also sporting sanctions to be imposed on the player and the English club for breach of contract and inducement to breach of contract respectively.
"The DRC found that the player had indeed breached a contract signed with the French club. Equally, the DRC deemed it to be established that the English club induced the player to such breach.
"As a result the player was condemned to pay compensation in the amount of EUR 780,000, for which the club, Chelsea, is jointly and severally liable, and sporting sanctions were imposed on both the player and Chelsea in accordance with art. 17 par. 3 and 4 of the Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players.
"A restriction of four months on his eligibility to play in official matches is imposed on the player Gael Kakuta while the club Chelsea is banned from registering any new players, either nationally or internationally, for the two next entire and consecutive registration periods following the notification of the present decision.
"Furthermore, Chelsea, has to pay RC Lens training compensation in the amount of EUR 130,000."
Kakuta, who is held in high regard by the Chelsea faithful, joined the club two years ago and has been a revalation ever since. His first season, the 18 year old finished as the top scorer in the youth teams as well as being voted the youth team player of the year.
Kakuta has now been banned from playing football for four months.
This news will most likely kick up a storm and rightly so! The punishment seems a little on the extreme side. Chelsea have been told they have right to appeal and they will most likely excersise that right. If they do, the case will be taken to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne. If this decision is up held, it will mean Chelsea won't be signing any players until January 2011—Thats 15 months from now!
The question of the day is undoubtedly, can Chelsea survive this sort of ban? Believe it or not, I think they can. People will bring up the age factor in the squad and although it's not favourable, it's not disastrous either. January 2011 might seem like a lifetime away now, but it is just over one year away. I'd like to believe the current crop of players can stick together and perform to the standard expected until that time.
The way I see it, the ban will most likely be reduced anyway after the inevitable appeal.
It is understood that Swiss club (FC Sion) has already been hit with a similar ban and the player in question has also been given a four month ban. They appealed and were allowed to buy players pending the outcome of the decision.
Therefore, on the assumption we would appeal anyway, possibly not as bad as people are thinking. If anything I would have thought that those fans who favoured giving the youth a chance may now get there way as that certainly is an option we have to consider.
The football governing bodies, FIFA and UEFA, have made no effort in hiding the fact that don't like the English very much. Are English clubs are being targeted because of their success? First the Eduardo affair and now this! Diving and tapping up obviously don't occur abroad, of course not!
Let us all hope Chelsea win the Champions League and p*** them off even more!