PFA joins legal case against Fifa over match calendar

The Professional Footballers' Association has joined a legal action against Fifa over the "overloaded and unworkable" football calendar.

The PFA are co-claimants with the French players' union in the claim filed at the Brussels court of commerce, with the support of the European office of players' union Fifpro.

It is "challenging the legality of Fifa's decisions to unilaterally set the international match calendar and, in particular, the decision to create and schedule the Fifa Club World Cup 2025".

There are scheduled to be 12 European representatives at the expanded Club World Cup, to be held in the United States from 15 June-13 July 2025.

The PFA says it has "joined a legal case which will seek to challenge the structures of the current football calendar by enforcing the legal rights of players to take guaranteed and protected breaks".

The English players' union believes the scheduling of the tournament, which was confirmed by the Fifa Council in December 2022, is a "tipping point for the football calendar and the ability of players to be able to take meaningful breaks between seasons".

Fifa recently rejected claims that Fifpro and the World Leagues Association were not consulted over plans to host the competition.

World football's governing body also said that, while it was open to talks, it had no intention of altering next year’s Club World Cup, despite the threat of legal action.

"Everyone across football knows that the fixture calendar is broken to the point that it has now become unworkable," said PFA chief executive Maheta Molango.

“There are too many emerging instances across football where the rights of players, and the legal implications of decisions by governing bodies and competition organisers, are seen as something that can just be ignored.

“Players are not being listened to and they want to see action. As their union, we have a duty to intervene and to enforce their legal rights as employees. Ultimately, that time has now come.”