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Bridget explains... the transfer window


Hey BridgeKids,

The transfer window opens on Thursday this week, a month and a half earlier than usual!

With a World Cup coming up in the summer, teams will take advantage of the early start to do as much transfer business as possible before some of their players go to Russia.

But what exactly is the transfer window, and why does English football (and many other leagues) use one?

I've answered some transfer window questions to help you make sense of the busy summer period!

What is the transfer window?

There are two transfer windows in English football, one in the winter and one in the summer. They are the periods when football teams can register new players with FIFA who they have bought or loaned from other clubs.

Why is there a transfer window?

The Premier League's football transfer system was launched in 2002/03. Many football authorities across Europe (like the FA) decided that having two transfer windows, one in summer and one in winter, would help football clubs remain stable.

Before England had a transfer window, teams were able to just sign players whenever they wanted, even if they took them from a rival team mid-season!

Although FIFA made transfer windows compulsory (meaning everyone had to have one) in 2002, English football came up with the idea in the 1990s.

What is a transfer?

I won't go into detail here, because I've talked about transfers in another 'Bridget explains...', which you can find HERE.

Why is the transfer window opening so early this season?

The summer transfer window usually opens on 1 July. However, Premier League teams voted to close the summer transfer before the start of the season in September last year, so that players couldn't leave when managers had already sorted out their starting teams and seen them in action.

As the transfer window closes early, Premier League teams also decided to open the window earlier to give them more time to make transfers.

The World Cup is also a big reason: teams want to finish their transfer business before their players go off to Russia where it will be harder to get time with them to sign a contract.

When does the transfer window close, then?

The English transfer window closes on Thursday 9 August. However, although they won't be able to buy players after that, English teams will be able to sell players as other transfer windows around the world will still be open.

What does this mean for the players?

Most players will just be starting their holidays a little later than usual. It's toughest on the ones going to the World Cup though: they could spend their whole holiday either meeting agents and going to fitness tests, or playing more football in Russia! They might not even get a break! 

Although, if playing in a World Cup meant I missed my summer holiday, I would jump at the chance!!!