FIFA has officially suspended Real Madrid's and Atletico Madrid's transfer bans following the clubs' decision to appeal, according to Goal.com.
According to Spanish football insider Sid Lowe, FIFA's decision means both clubs will be able to sign players this summer, although the appeals process could still come to an end before the summer window opens.
Lowe outlined how the next months will likely play out:
So they will be doing all they can to slow the process and have no resolution either way before then... (Not sure of mechanisms/timeframes)— Sid Lowe (@sidlowe) January 29, 2016
Barcelona used a similar approach when they received a transfer ban in 2014 and were able to push it past the summer by appealing. The Catalans were notified of the news in April, however, while Real and Atletico were notified in January. Per Ed Malyon of the Daily Mirror, the precedent set by Barcelona could speed up the appeals process.
Both clubs have been punished for irregularities in signing youth players, per ESPN FC. Atletico have made two appeals, one to make the decision null and a preliminary suspension, which was eventually granted.
Per Goal.com, Atletico maintain they did nothing wrong. In an official statement, the club said: "We consider that we have acted within the law in all cases. In addition, we request the probationary suspension of the sanction pending the outcome of the appeal."
While FIFA's decision to suspend the ban is good news for both clubs, who will likely be able to stockpile players during the summer, it's still highly unlikely the punishment will effectively be overturned.
Lowe had some advice for Los Blancos:
Can't help thinking it might do Madrid some good to not sign for a bit.— Sid Lowe (@sidlowe) January 29, 2016
Expect both clubs to be active during the summer if the appeals process lasts that long, with Real in particular throwing tons of money at big-money players. Barcelona brought in striker Luis Suarez just before their ban kicked in, and Los Blancos will likely make at least one similar signing.
The club have been linked with the likes of Eden Hazard from Chelsea, David De Gea from Manchester United, Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich and Paul Pogba from Juventus, per the MailOnline's Pete Jenson, and they are expected to move for at least one of those targets.