FIFA is aiming to create a global club licensing framework by the end of 2016, working with the six regional confederations to improve club football. To achieve this objective, FIFA will define minimum standards in key areas such as stadium safety, fan experience and youth football development. The FIFA club licensing principles will form the basis for the confederations’ own club licensing principles, taking into account the regional specificity of club football.
Essentially, this means that confederations will come up with their own specific frameworks based on FIFA’s minimum requirements. Clubs then need to meet these principles to be eligible for certain competitions, adhering to international statutes, investing in training facilities and agreeing to the independent auditing of finances and greater transparency of ownership.
The FIFA club licensing system requires clubs to commit to minimum standards and principles in five key areas:
1. Sporting criteria e.g. clubs must have a youth development programme; clubs must promote fair play
2. Infrastructure criteria e.g. clubs must have safe, comfortable stadiums for fans, families and media; clubs must have appropriate training facilities
3. Personnel and administrative criteria e.g. clubs must have qualified coaches and medical staff and professional, well-educated management
4. Legal criteria e.g. clubs must adhere to international statutes; club ownership must be transparent
5. Financial criteria e.g. independent auditing of club finances including financial statements and transparency of ownership
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