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Moment of truth for UEFA: Financial Fair Play ruling due in 2015

January 10, 2014 -- Updated 1233 GMT (2033 HKT)
Belgian lawyer Jean-Louis Dupont represented football Jean-Marc Bosman in 1995.
Belgian lawyer Jean-Louis Dupont represented football Jean-Marc Bosman in 1995.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • UEFA's Financial Fair Play regulations to be judged in court in 2015
  • Financial Fair Play designed to prevent football clubs spending beyond their means
  • The regulations have been challenged by an Italian football agent
  • Daniel Striani has hired the lawyer who worked with Belgian footballer Jean-Marc Bosman

(CNN) -- UEFA's new system of financial regulation faces judgment in the European courts -- but not before 2015.

UEFA, the body which governs soccer in Europe, introduced Financial Fair Play (FFP) at the start of the 2012-13 season as a way of preventing clubs from spending beyond their means and posting unsustainable yearly losses.

The rules give UEFA sweeping powers, including exclusion from the lucrative Champions League, to punish financially recalcitrant clubs.

However the regulations have been challenged by an Italian football agent who claims FFP breaches European Union competition laws.

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Daniel Striani has hired the lawyer that helped revolutionize the way football's transfer system works to fight his corner.

"The court has now issued the procedural calendar : hearing in February 2015 and therefore the judgment can be expected around March or April 2015," Jean-Louis Dupont, who in 1995 helped Belgian footballer Jean-Marc Bosman change European law to allow players to move for free at the end of their contracts, told CNN.

Striani's complaint argues UEFA's "break-even rule" restricts competition -- a key principle of European Law -- and will reduce the number of transfers.

That could potentially lower players' salaries -- and by implication agents' fees -- prompting Striani to lodge the complaint with the Commission.

Uefa is confident it will win the case, arguing that the European Commission, the European Parliament, as well as European clubs, leagues and players' unions have all been fully supportive of FFP.

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