Football Language: Financial Fair Play

This post explains Financial Fair Playthe phrase ‘Financial Fair Play’ – which has been in the news recetly.

  • Find out more about this phrase by reading the transcript below.
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Financial Fair Play

This week Brazilian star Neymar moved from Barcelona to French side Paris Saint-Germain for a new world transfer record of €222m, more than double the previous highest transfer fee, which raised questions about the idea of financial fair play. This is an initiative set up by UEFA – the European football body – to ‘…improv(e) the overall financial health of European club football.’ In simple terms this means that a club is not allowed to spend too much more than it earns and if it does then UEFA will decide on a punishment – maybe a warning, a fine, a deduction in points or maybe limiting the number of players allowed to be registered in a competition. Simply, it tries to ensure that bigger clubs do not spend more than smaller clubs. However, there are ways around this UEFA initiative meaning clubs can still spend more than it makes when buying players which makes FFP – Financial Fair Play – a fairly weak deterrent. Financial Fair Play.

Example: ‘How can PSG pay £200m for Neymar? What happened to Financial Fair Play?’ (, 2nd August 2017).

Example: Jurgen Klopp Blasts UEFA’s Financial Fair Play Scheme Ahead of Neymar £198m Deal to PSG ( 3rd August 2017).



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Learn English Through FootballWelcome to the website that helps students interested in football improve their English language skills. Football fans can practise with lots of free language resources, including football-language podcasts and our huge football-language glossary.

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