Intermediaries during the international transfers took more than $650 million in commissions in 2019, said FIFA in its annual report on December 4. The international governing body for soccer published the annual figures amid a dispute with agents regarding the future limits on the commission. According to the report, the spending on commissions shot up to $653.9 million, a 19.3 per cent increase from that of 2018.
“Of this amount, about two thirds (USD 425.5 million) was paid to intermediaries representing engaging clubs and about one third (USD 228.4 million) to intermediaries representing releasing clubs,” the report said.
FIFA said that over 80% of all intermediary commissions worldwide was paid by clubs from Italy, England, Germany, Portugal, Spain and France combined. Portuguese clubs alone spent $78.1 million on intermediary commissions, almost half as much as they have spent on transfer fees to engage players. The report highlighted that 3,558 transfers involved at least one intermediary.
Among 828 international transfers of female professional players under FIFA‘s International Transfer Matching System (ITMS), 242 transfers involved at least one intermediary. “Transfers with engaging club intermediaries more than doubled in 2019, from 24 in 2018,” the report read. FIFA said that the reason behind the rise was partly due to an overall increase in the number of transfers, but it also reflected the increase in the number of intermediaries acting for the engaging club, which surged from 3.4 per cent to 6.2 per cent.
The data on average commission to club intermediaries signalled a trend with commissions paid by engaging clubs was higher than those paid by releasing clubs. It also analysed that the percentage in commissions tend to be lower if the overall transfer fees are higher. The report found out that players, in 2019, used intermediaries three times as often in permanent transfers than when they moved out of the contract.
(With inputs from ANI)