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Fair play rules vital to prevent 'irresponsible few' putting clubs at risk

Michel Platini yesterday underlined his desire resolutely to implement Uefa's financial fair play rules, which will come into being this summer.

The new rules mean that clubs can spend on transfers and wages only what they earn in revenues over a rolling three-year period and Platini, Uefa's president, believes it is the best way of protecting the future of the club game in Europe.

He told the Uefa congress in Paris yesterday: "This project should enable us to prevent some of our most time-honoured clubs from going under because of risky management by an irresponsible few.

"Allow me to remind you of one figure: together, Europe's professional clubs accumulated net losses of €1.2bn [£1.04bn] in 2009 alone. There is a huge amount of money in football, but more importantly there is a moral problem in the way this money is sometimes generated and used.

"Financial fair play is a crucial project that will enable us to clean up certain practices within our game. It will be implemented in full and we will apply the rules with the courage and resolution for which Uefa should be known."

Platini also voiced concern over the rise of violence and sectarianism, as well as the need to deal with the increasing problem of match-fixing and illegal gambling.

"Every country should establish a battery of legal measures enabling them to ban hooligans from stadiums. Every country should appoint a prosecutor in charge of illegal betting and corruption in sport. It is important [governments] realise the seriousness of the situation."