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FIFA Set To Launch Fund… For Player Salary Protection

FIFA and FIFPRO have reached an agreement to establish the FIFA Fund for Football Players (FIFA FFP), which aims to provide financial support to players who have not been paid and have no chance of duly receiving the wages agreed with their clubs.

FIFA has set aside US$16m for the fund up to 2022, with this allocation to be divided as follows: US$3m in 2020, US$4m in 2021 and US$4m in 2022, plus a further US$5m set aside for the retroactive protection of players’ salaries for the period between July 2015 and June 2020.

Several recent reports – including FIFPRO’s own 2016 Global Employment Report: Working Conditions in Professional Football – have attested to the proliferation of cases involving the non-payment of players’ salaries across the world.

In 2019, FIFA revised its Disciplinary Code, wherein it bolstered the framework for dealing with the non-payment of players’ wages, particularly in situations featuring so-called sporting successors of debtor clubs, that is new clubs formed with the prime aim of avoiding paying players their overdue salaries.

The agreement envisages the establishment of a monitoring committee composed of FIFA and FIFPRO representatives to process, assess and act on applications for grants from the FIFA FFP. While these grants will not cover the full amount of salaries owed to players, this fund will provide an important safety net.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino welcomed this new initiative, stating, “This agreement and our commitment to helping players in a difficult situation show how we interpret our role as world football’s governing body. We are also here to reach out to those in need, especially within the football community, and that starts with the players, who are the key figures in our game.”

Likewise, FIFPRO President Philippe Piat said, “More than 50 clubs in 20 countries have shut in the last five years, plunging hundreds of footballers into uncertainty and hardship.”