Fifa’s new electronic transfer system passes January test

Fifa pleased with smooth running of compulsory new football transfer system during January window

Martin Caparrotta
By Martin Caparrotta
fifa president sepp blatter
Fifa's new system is designed to make transfers more transparent Photo: via Wikipedia - M Casal

fifa president sepp blatter

Fifa has hailed the introduction of its new Transfer Matching System (TMS) as a success after it was put through its paces during the January transfer window.

The electronic system, designed to make transfers more transparent and combat the threat of money laundering, was made mandatory for all international moves last October.

TMS requires both clubs involved in a player’s transfer to enter verified details of the payments and parties involved online.

If clubs fail to enter the required details, the national associations will be unable to grant the paperwork needed to complete a deal.

“At the peak of the window there were 115 member associations who were open for business,” said Fifa TMS general manager Mark Goddard.

“In basic terms, that means that more than half the football planet was using our system, and we’re very pleased that we had no operational issues.”

The system includes a clock which counts down the minutes to the end of the window to ensure deals are closed within the deadline.

Brazilian defender David Luiz’s transfer to Chelsea was one switch that only just made it after his move from Benfica to London went through with only two minutes to spare.

Luiz’s transfer was one of 2,451 international moves to have taken place in January – a 104 per cent increase from this time last year with over £198m changing hands.

“The implementation of the system is a big step change in the way that international football transfers are conducted,” added Goddard.

“As a football fan following the endless transfer speculation, it can seem that a club is in negotiations for a player constantly throughout the window.

“The reality, however, is that once the two clubs agree on all the details the actual processing of the transfer online in the TMS can take as little as 20 to 40 minutes.”

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