FIFA revises rules on releasing players for international break

FIFA has revised rules relating to clubs’ obligation to release players for next month’s international friendlies and Nations League games. Clubs will not be obliged to release their players for duty in September’s international window if it will mean a period of quarantine. After consultation with UEFA, FIFA had made some key changes in the rules with the help of member associations involved in next month’s international friendlies and Nation League matches.

With the COVID-19 crisis still threatening life across the planet, football’s governing body has introduced temporary measures to lessen the health risk to players and impact on clubs. But because of this, clubs will not have to release their players to represent their homeland if it involves a mandatory period of self-isolation of at least five days.

A recently released statement regarding the issue read, 

“In the light of the recent evolution of the coronavirus pandemic, the Bureau of the FIFA Council has unanimously decided to temporarily adopt the rules concerning the release of players during the upcoming September international window, which is to be played only by UEFA member associations.”

It then elaborated on how a few of the measures would affect the competition, the major ones being the self-isolation and the travel restrictions. Thus, there were some conditions put forth in cases of which the clubs will not be obliged to release their players as it would break the general rules that are in control throughout the years.

They are: 

If there is a mandatory period of quarantine or self-isolation of at least five days upon arrival at the location of the club which has an obligation to release the player to an association team or the location where a representative team match is scheduled to take place, there is travel restriction to or from either location and no specific exemption from the relevant authorities relating to the above decisions has been granted to players of a representative team.

The revised measures are expected to be applied from August 31 to September 8 for men and from September 14 to 22 for women.

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