Players will be allowed to play for up to three clubs, instead of two, during the course of a season in a temporary rule change to alleviate the effects of the novel coronavirus pandemic on the sport, FIFA announced on Thursday.
The global body added that the move was ‘to avoid any concerns regarding unemployed players.’
FIFA also said it would allow national associations to open their transfer window for the 2020/21 season before the current campaign has finished.
It said the change was intended to allow clubs to complete the 2019/20 season with their original squad, even where the campaign had been extended from May into June and July as is the case in a number of European countries.
However, the clock is ticking for clubs to finalise contract extensions with players whose deals are due to expire on June 30.
The rules have been adapted to allow clubs to agree short-term extensions with players so they can complete the season before becoming free agents when the extended campaign finally ends. They have until June 23 to sort them out.
More than 60 Premier League players will see their deals expire at the end of the season. Adam Lallana at Liverpool is among the latest to finalise a short-term extension.
The future of a number of players, though, including the likes of Bournemouth’s Ryan Fraser, have yet to be confirmed, and recent reports have suggested the Scot could turn down a short-term extension on the south coast.