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Last Updated: Friday, 28 January, 2005, 20:32 GMT
League accepts transfer windows
The Football League has accepted defeat in its efforts to stop Fifa applying its transfer window restrictions across the board.

It will join Premiership clubs in operating under the constraints from this summer onwards.

Football League director of operations Andy Williamson: "This is the third season where we've had an exemption.

"That will not apply any more - there's not going to be any further extended period of flexibility."

The world governing body has dug its heels in and ordered all English clubs to abide by their ruling, meaning transfers will only be permissible in the off-season and during January.

Court action had been hinted at, in an effort to allow clubs from the Championship, League One and League Two to deal throughout the year.

But Football League chairman Sir Brian Mawhinney has sent a letter to all member clubs which recognises Fifa's authority in the matter.

In abiding by Fifa's terms, the 72 Football League clubs will come into line with the Barclays Premiership, where the restrictions have been in place since the beginning of the 2001-02 campaign.

The news will inevitably be of serious concern to many clubs, who will be denied for the first time the opportunity to operate in the transfer market on their own terms.

Effectively, the league authorities have backed off from a potential court battle with Fifa which they were unlikely to win.

Mawhinney sounds warning
23 Sep 04 |  Football
League chief battles Fifa
22 Jul 04 |  Football

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