Make players pay for agents, says Barça chief


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The Independent Football

Sandro Rosell, the Barcelona president, has called on Uefa to change the rules on clubs having to pay agents' fees, and said the current system, in which players do not foot the bill for their own representation does not make sense.

"I have always asked myself why, when an agent is representing a player and he comes to negotiate his contract with the club, why is the club paying the agency fees?" Rosell said at a football conference in Dubai yesterday. "When he is defending the other party and what he wants is to get the maximum number for the other party and, at the end, you have to pay the commission to the agent, it doesn't make sense. This is something I would ask Uefa to change as a rule."

Transfers are big business and agents' cuts can run into millions of pounds. The system has come in for much criticism, Fifa in September announcing plans aimed at capping the amount agents can earn from transfers. While maintaining that agents are the responsibility of Fifa, Gianni Infantino, the general secretary Uefa, had some sympathy for Rosell's position.

"I also agree on who has to pay the agent – the player who uses the agent," Infantino said. "That seems quite obvious as well. If you go to the hairdressers, you don't send your employer to pay the bill," he added.

Meanwhile, Uefa has not ruled out excluding clubs caught up in the Turkish match-fixing scandal from future European competitions, Infantino said. "There are no plans in this respect but there are rules that we are applying in the same way to all clubs," Infantino insisted on the sidelines of the conference.

"It seems to be only domestic matches, where it's under the jurisdiction of the national association to take the necessary measures. We are discussing with the Turkish football association and, if necessary, we will certainly not hesitate to take necessary measures," he added.

Fenerbahçe were stopped from participating in this season's Champions League by the Turkish Football Federation after allegations of match-fixing surfaced, the Istanbul club's 4-3 victory over Sivasspor, which won the league championship on the season's closing day, one of the results under scrutiny.

Indictments were issued earlier this month by a Turkish court against 93 officials and players, including the chairman of Fenerbahçe, for match-fixing in a case which has sent shockwaves through the country.

The process has been complicated by the passage this month of a law in Turkey which reduces the maximum prison sentence for match-fixing to three years from 12 years.

Infantino would not be drawn on the move but urged all sides to tackle the problem.