Cardiff City face a three-window transfer ban unless they pay French club Nantes the first instalment for the transfer of Emiliano Sala who died in a plane crash on his way to join the Welsh club, world governing body FIFA said on Monday.
FIFA released the full reasoning for their September decision that Cardiff must pay the agreed first instalment of 6 million euros (£5.2 million) to Nantes.
After signing for Cardiff for £15 million in January, Sala was travelling to Wales from the French club when his plane crashed in the English Channel.
The body of the 28-year-old Argentine striker was recovered nearly three weeks later after an underwater search found the wreckage.
FIFA’s Players’ Status Committee said that if Cardiff does not pay the six million euros within 45 days of receiving bank details from Nantes, “A ban from registering any new players, either nationally or internationally, for the maximum duration of three entire and consecutive registration periods shall become effective”.
Cardiff City did not immediately respond to a request for comment but the club had previously stated they intend to take the matter to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland.