Having broken rules regarding signing the signature of players under the age of 18, Barcelona have been banned from signing any players for 14 months, as well as being fined £305,000 for their mistakes. The La Liga giants can still appeal the decision from UEFA, but it would have to be lodged within the next three days to be heard.
The punishment is one of the most severe that UEFA have handed out, and serves as a huge blow to a side who are in desperate need to changes this summer, with experienced heads such as Victor Valdes and Carles Puyol set for the Camp Nou exit door.
Under the suspension, Barca are unable to sign or sell any players, which severely hampers Gerardo Martino's plans to make the club back into the feared and revered side from a few years ago, but the ruling is already having an impact on the club.
Barcelona agreed to sign Croatian wonderkid Alen Halilovic in March, but the 17-year-old would only join up the Barcelona B side in July after becoming 18. A number of clubs had eyed up the Dinamo Zagreb starlet, but a move to the Camp Nou was just too much for the international to turn down.
But with the new restrictions put in place, Halilovic would be unable to complete his transfer to the Catalan giants this summer, which could put Tottenham, who were strongly linked with Halilovic, back in the frame to clinch his signature once again.
Manchester City and Manchester United are reportedly now eyeing up Halilovic's situation, but all three suitors for the youngster will be hoping that Barcelona's ban will stand so they can have a shot at signing the player who has been tentatively nicknamed 'the Croatian Messi'.