EPFL Fosters Best Practice on Youth Development and Financial Stability

Board and General Assembly gathered in Moscow
EPFL General Assembly – 24 June, Moscow

Board and General Assembly gathered in Moscow
The Association of European Professional Football Leagues (EPFL) has closed with a golden key the 2008/2009 sporting season with the approval of set of best practice recommendations on youth development and a comprehensive diagnosis on financial governance at the national level, in a meeting where a great deal of other matters of vital significance for the future of Professional Football were also addressed.

The 2008/2009 Season in review
Gathered in Moscow last week, the European Leagues’ chiefs have passed into review the sheer amount of work performed by the Association throughout the whole season and congratulated the EPFL for the significant achievements reached. Particular attention was given to the new Memorandum of Understanding between the EPFL and UEFA. In addition to such Memorandum of Understanding, which formalizes a renewed and strengthened spirit of constructive cooperation between both organisations at the European level in areas of relevant common interest, focus was also placed on financial governance matters, youth development, European social dialogue, protection of intellectual property rights and sports betting integrity, among other key issues facing Professional Football.

Best Practice on Financial Governance addressed 
The main findings of the EPFL Report on Good Financial Governance at National Level have been presented to the General Assembly and discussed with the Leagues. The Report, which is based on a comprehensive Survey launched by the EPFL following the creation of a special task force last October, assesses the current impact of the global economic recession upon day-to-day professional football at the national level and highlights the different regulatory frameworks in place across Europe as well as best practices in respect of financial governance standards, club ownership rules,  supervision mechanisms, club licensing systems, transfer clearing houses, fit and proper person tests and others relevant topics.

EPFL Recommendation on Recruitment, Training and Protection of Young Players
Committed to take a positive and proactive standing to ensure football’s long terms interests and future development, the EPFL Board of Directors and General Assembly have also approved, by unanimous decision, a set of ?General Guidelines on Recruitment, Training, Education and Protection of Young Players’to be implemented at the national level.

Concluding an intensive and participated process initiated last October, this pioneering initiative fosters the implementation of a series of best practices in terms of youth development. Among its primary objectives, special focus is given to the promotion of the ethics and highest standards across football as well as appropriate forms of cooperation between the various responsible sports bodies. In this respect, a wide array of specific recommendations is contemplated to ensure that all young players train and play in a safe and supportive environment and that they are protected from potential abuses which may arise from the international movement of young players contrary to the applicable rules and regulations.
Social Responsibility flag raised higher by the European Leagues
The EPFL has reaffirmed its resolution in mobilising the strong influence of its member Leagues and the hundreds of clubs that they represent across Europe to tackle the growing problem hunger of hunger, which now affect 1.020 billion human beings worldwide.  During the Association’s General Assembly a report on the initiatives so far developed in partnership with the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) has been presented, alongside with the major guidelines of the 2009/2010 joint action plan, which shall be publicly announced in due course.

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