Chelsea could be hit with two-year transfer ban by Federation Internationale de Football Association

El escudo del Chelsea en un banderín de córner en Stamford Bridge

Premier League Chelsea could be hit with two-year transfer ban by FIFA NEIL HALL EFE

Federation Internationale de Football Association have been investigating Chelsea's recruitment of underage minors since the revelation that the club broke transfer rules in signing Bertrand Traoré, a Burkina Faso striker, before his 18th birthday in 2014. Investigations with relation to the same are ongoing and a decision could be taken soon.

French website Mediapart have published some of the documents obtained by Football Leaks which claim that Fifa's Integrity and Compliance unit has suggested that a two-year (four-window) transfer ban should be imposed on Chelsea. The identity of the other English quartet has not been revealed, though Federation Internationale de Football Association confirmed in September 2017 that Manchester City's conduct involving youth players was under review.

It is believed at least four other Premier League clubs are under investigation and some of the biggest clubs in Europe are also being looked into.

Traore officially joined Chelsea in 2014 at the age of 18, but the club later admitted that they acquired a first-refusal option to sign him.

Chelsea will hope to clear their name so as not to be punished in the same way as, or more severely than, the Spanish clubs mentioned earlier. Manchester United, who are among the clubs with most number of minor signings between 2013 and 2017, are not a part of the investigation.

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According to a report by Mediapart, the Blues could allegedly be the latest European club to be sanctioned by the world's governing body for the illegal signing of players under the age of 18. Thus, the clubs are to be presumed innocent unless decided otherwise. No further information can be provided.' Meanwhile Chelsea will consider loan offers for Gary Cahill, 32. Other than releasing a short statement in which they insisted they are cooperating with Fifa, Chelsea would not comment on the report or the case. "Any update will be communicated in due course".

FIFA's rules prohibit worldwide transfers of players under the age of 18 unless their parents have emigrated for reasons unconnected to football or both player and club are based within 50km of a national border.

The only exceptions relate to transfers within the EU or European Economic Area.

Were given an unprecedented 14-month transfer ban for breaking rules on signing worldwide players under 18 in 2014 and fined £305,000.

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