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Chelsea face another investigation from FIFA for the third time in eight years over a potential breach of the World football governing regulations on youth players.
FIFA confirmed on Tuesday it had launched an inquiry into the club’s conduct involving signing foreigners under the age of 18.
The Blues were fortunate for a transfer ban imposed on the club in 2009 over the recruitment of Gaël Kakuta from Lens, while last year saw them investigated about Bertrand Traoré’s move to Stamford Bridge after pictures emerged of the midfielder playing for them before he had international clearance.
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Real Madrid was also banned from recruiting players last year, with their punishment later reduced from two transfer windows to one after much appeal by the Los Blancos chiefs.
Any potential breach of the rules by Chelsea was described as less serious than that by their Spanish rivals.
A club spokesman said: “Chelsea FC complies with all FIFA statutes and regulations when recruiting players.”
Liverpool and Manchester City have both been punished by the Premier League this year over the tapping-up of youth players.
The two clubs were fined and banned from signing academy prospects, with City sanctioned for contacting parents of players too early in the recruitment process.