Last week, FIFA confirmed that several new regulations involving the the operation of agents in the sport will come into action soon. Apart from introducing a new, mandatory licensing system for agents, the regulations will look to impose caps on the amount of commissions they can earn from transfers.
The regulations say that agents who represent players that earn atleast $200,000 will earn only 3 percent of any transaction. When an agent is representing both the player and the buying club, he can’t earn more than 6 percent of player payment and they can’t earn more than 10 percent of the transfer, if they’re representing the selling club.
The move though, has attracted criticism from several agents and Get Italian Football News caught up with Cesare Marchetti from Deadline Day Sports to have a brief chat about the situation. Cesare also leads a course which teaches people all aspects of being a football agent, as well as prepares them for the FIFA agent exam.
Do you think the increasing influence of agents in football is a good thing for the game?
I don’t think that there is an increasing influence of agents in football. Clubs make all of the decisions, regardless of what the media may say. Most of the media reporting is all theatre. Agents only have so much influence and they are the easiest people to blame when clubs don’t want to take responsibility.
Will the new FIFA regulations on agent fees and caps negatively impact the medium to small agencies in football?
Yes, FIFA fail to understand the role of agents, how the industry operates and they are going to put a lot of small / medium sized agents out of business and cause a lot of smaller players to struggle to find an agent. The rules protect the big agencies and kill the smaller agencies.
Do you believe that the caps on agent fees are too high?
Agent fees should be capped at 10%. 10% is fair, 5% is ridiculously low on a salary of $200k.
Is there a possibility that with the new rulings, the transfer fees in football in general increase so that agents earn more commission per transfer?
No! The new ruling will only increase the market share of the bigger agencies and it’ll mean that a lot of players struggle to find agents and smaller agents go out business. Agent fees and regulations have zero to do with transfer fees and player salaries. It’s the commerical side of the game which dictates transfer fees and salaries.
Do you believe that the influences of agents in football will increase further in the further?
No! I don’t see there being agents in the traditional sense in 10 years time, as the influence of technology and sports lawyers grow in the game. Transfers will be done more and more via tech platforms with sports lawyers intermediating.
Kaustubh Pandey | GIFN