History of EFAA
Since 2007, EFAA has worked tirelessly to present the football agent perspective before other football stakeholders—after more than a decade, we show no sign of stopping.
FIFA's Regulations on Working with Intermediaries ("RWI") led to the deregulation of the football agent profession, as the previous requirements of passing an examination, signing a code of professional conduct, and holding liability insurance were disbanded. Meanwhile, enforcement was left to the national federations, with the regulations only establishing minimum requirements. This led to a chaotic transfer market, as rules and enforcement varied per country. The deregulation of the industry was opposed of by EFAA, leading the organization to take action into its own hands. EFAA has since assisted its members in developing accredidation standards for football agents per country, but with the ability for these qualifications to transfer across borders. This harmonization of standards brings about more transparency in the transfer market, mollifies the bureaucratic hold-ups in conducting international transfers, and assures clubs and players of the integrity and professionalism of the agent with whom they work.
In November 2017, the EU Sectorial Social Dialogue Committee for Professional Football—composed of ECA, EPFL (now European Leagues), FIFPro, UEFA, and under the auspices of the European Commission—met to discuss FIFA's RWI. This committee noted the apparent flaws of the regulations, such as a decreased quality of service from intermediares and inconsistent implementation and enforcement across countries. Consequently, the committee issued the "Resolution on intermediaries/agents," calling for a "harmonized, European approach" so as "to ensure higher professional and ethical standards." EFAA supported this conclusion and immediately took action to bring stakeholders together in order to discuss what was necessary in order to make positive changes within the intermediary/agent profession.
In response to the EU Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee's "Resolution on intermediaries/agents" (November, 2017), EFAA hosted a roundtable discussion in April with representatives from key football bodies, such as the European Commission, ECA, UEFA, KNVB, and Ligue de Football Professionnel. 2018 likewise marked the beginning of the FIFA Task Force's research into the transfer market, with the intention of overhauling the entire transfer system and current regulatory frameworks (including the RWI). EFAA took an active position in this process, with its Board members sharing the agent perspective to FIFA officials in Zurich. While not official consultation, these meetings represent some of the first genuine discussions held between FIFA and football agents regarding the regulation of the profession in an effective manner.
On July 23 at Loughborough University London, EFAA invited lawyers, agents, academics, and journalists to a roundtable discussion which detailed EFAA's position on key issues before the FIFA Task Force finalizes the forthcoming regulations that replace the RWI. More information and details on this event can be found under "Updates."