BRUSSELS: Football lawyer Jean-Louis Dupont has continued his drive to overturn UEFA’s financial fair play regulations by asking a Brussels court to examine the rules.
Dupont, who previously helped Jean-Marc Bosman win his landmark freedom of contract case in 1995, is representing Belgian player agent Daniel Striani in the complaint that is challenging FFP’s break-even rule.
Reuters reports that Dupont has entered a second legal challenge in the belief that the Brussels court will have to seek the opinion of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) on the matter. Dupont last month entered a complaint at the European Commission (EC) against FFP, adding that even if UEFA’s efforts to tackle overspending was justifiable, it would be illegal because European football’s governing body could achieve its goals with a less restrictive measure.
He said UEFA could instead require that any spending beyond projected income be fully guaranteed for the duration of a season.
UEFA’s FFP regulations received a crucial endorsement in March 2012 with the governing body signing an agreement with the EC. The joint agreement ensured that the rules are compliant with European law and effectively closed off the potential for clubs to challenge the regulations in court.
UEFA’s FFP rules are set to fully come into play next season. UEFA has maintained that the EC, the European Parliament, clubs and leagues have all supported FFP and that it was designed to guarantee the long-term viability of football. It said it believed FFP was fully in line with EU law and was confident the Commission would reject the complaint.
Dupont in March claimed the FFP regulations would be unlikely to survive a challenge to the ECJ.
The Belgian lawyer, writing in the Wall Street Journal, argued that UEFA could improve the financial balance of football by imposing a ‘luxury tax’ on high-spending clubs. An EC report in February called on the introduction of such a tax in a bid to regulate transfer spending and introduce more equality in European football.
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