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New Soccer Transfer System Viewed

September 8, 2000

STRASBOURG, France (AP) _ Players for European soccer clubs won’t be granted unchecked free agency under a new transfer system.

``The European Commission in no way intends to ... create a situation to allow a player unilaterally to renege on a contract,″ EU Sports Commissioner Viviane Reding said Thursday.

European Union officials also chastised FIFA and UEFA, the sport’s world and European governing bodies, for letting the current player movement rules get out of hand.

After the EU’s executive commission threatened to outlaw the current soccer transfer system, FIFA agreed to revamp the system, making a proposal Wednesday. The new plan included scrapping transfer fees for players older than 24.

Players in European leagues are not required to serve out their contracts with a club if another team is willing to pay a transfer fee to hire them.

The EU stand raised fears that players would be able to leave clubs at will.

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