‘Madrid ban absurd…’

Real Madrid director general Jose Angel Sanchez has dismissed the club’s transfer embargo as ‘absurd,’ insisting the alleged infringements ‘never happened.’

Madrid and Atletico Madrid were on Thursday barred from registering players for two transfer windows, starting in summer 2016, after FIFA found irregularities in the registrations of under-18s from outside Spain.

“This club has never worked with the family to uproot underage players,” Sanchez said, AS reports, beginning by repeating a statement issued earlier.

“This club has values and an ethical code. The file covers from 2005 but the various people in charge at the club have never broken that code. It has never happened.

“The arguments are wrong, attracting a lot of attention, leading to the club sanctioned, for example, for the children of Zinedine Zidane, the Coach, circumstances as absurd as this, and the brother of Ezequiel Garay.

“I assure you that the rest of these cases for which the club has been punished are exactly the same. The pattern is the same and the family circumstances the same.

“The club is confident the appeal will succeed, even at FIFA. [The ban] was unexpected and we haven’t planned anything at this time.

“It seems these rules were adopted in July but we weren’t warned. We’re confident in the appeal.

“We’ll do whatever we have to do. We just hope justice prevails and there are no consequences for the club. Hopefully it doesn’t get to [the Court of Arbitration for Sport] but we’ll take it there if necessary.

“Our intention is to exhaust the sporting options.”