Italian court allows Juve to boost balance sheet with overly inflated transfer deals

Apr.19 – Juventus and other clubs have been acquitted by Italy’s Federal Court following an extensive investigation into transfer fee inflation.

In a brief statement, the Italian FA (FIGC) said that “the reasons (for the acquittal) will be announced in the coming days”. The court cleared all eleven clubs under investigation: Juventus, Napoli, Genoa, Empoli and Sampdoria from Serie A, Pisa and Parma from Serie B, Pro Vercelli and Pescara from Lega Pro, and two clubs today missing – Novara and Chievo.

Juventus president Andrea Agnelli, current Tottenham Hotspur chief executive Fabio Paratici and Napoli chief Aurelio De Laurentii were among 58 senior football officials cleared by the court.

Italian prosecutors had sought a range of penalties including a 16-month football ban for Paratici and an £800,000 fine for Juventus.

Italian authorities have started investigating dozens of transfers, suspecting the clubs of applying accounting practices that are against the law. The $81 million move of Victor Osimhen from Lille to Napoli as well as the swap between FC Barcelona’s Arthur Melo and Juventus’ Miralem Pjanic were among the player moves studied.

The deals allowed the clubs involved to improve their annual financial accounts through capital gains, a practice that has become common in European football during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The National Federal Court presided over by Carlo Sica acquitted all the companies, managers and administrators of the clubs that had been referred by the federal prosecutor for accounting for capital gains and rights to player services for values ​​in the reports financial resources exceeding those permitted by accounting principles,” the FIGC statement read.

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