New regulations to be introduced next year mean the amount of money agents earn from transfer deals will be made public, says world governing body Fifa.

Fifa said it was a “mistake” to deregulate agents in 2015 and has begun a third round of consultation on the new regulations.

They will include a licensing system, character tests and commission caps.

They will also see the publication by Fifa of the money agents receive from their clients – both players and clubs.

The new regulations will also prohibit conflicts of interest, such as club or national association officials owning stakes in player agencies. 

Commission will be capped at 3% of a player’s salary when representing a player, 3% of a player’s salary when representing the buyer and 6% when the same agent represents both the player and the buyer.

An agent representing a selling club can earn a maximum of 10% of the transfer value.

Asked why the only cap was on commission, Fifa’s director of football regulatory James Kitching said: “It’s a matter of perception.

“If I’m telling somebody, ‘I’ll take 10%’, somebody might think that’s a small number and that’s fine. But if it’s 10% of £20m, that changes the perception. We need to change the perception and the activity in the market.

“Many of the practices which we describe as excessive and abusive derive from the types of commission payments that we’re describing right now. What we’re trying to do is bring in basic service standards.

“I’m not saying large numbers automatically lead to abusive practices, but an agent who acts on your behalf has a fiduciary duty to act in your best interests. Sometimes big numbers may cause an agent to not act in the best interests of the client.”

Fifa, which found in 2019 just under half a billion pounds was spent on commission fees worldwide, intends for commissions to not be paid directly from a client to an agent, but instead go through a clearing house system.

Agents will be consulted between now and the spring of 2021, and they will all receive the draft regulations and be asked for feedback.

The regulations will then go forward for Fifa Council approval between March and June next year before coming into force in September.

The rules eliminate triple representation – where an agent represents the player, the buyer and the seller – and also place a ban on dual representation, except where the agent represents the player and the buying club.

Representation agreements will be allowed to run for a maximum of two years, and it will be a breach of the regulations for an agent to approach a player under such an agreement before it enters its final two months.

The rules will also bar family members from acting for a player in transfer deals unless the family member is a licensed agent.

Leave a Reply