Chelsea will be unable to sign new players until the summer of 2020, after FIFA punished the Premier League club with a two-window transfer ban and a fine of 600,000 Swiss Francs.
Players may still leave the club, while the futsal and women’s teams can still sign new players.
The Blues were found to have broken articles 18 and 19 of the governing body’s rulebook, as a result of infringements in the cases of the signings of 29 under-18s.
“The protection of minors is a key element in FIFA’s overall regulatory framework relating to the transfer of players and effective enforcement of these rules is paramount, as also confirmed on various occasions by the Court of Arbitration for Sport,” a FIFA statement said.
Chelsea are to appeal the ruling, according to a statement they released a statement on Friday morning.
“Chelsea categorically refute the findings of the FIFA disciplinary committee and will therefore be appealing the decision,” it said.
“The club wishes to emphasise that it respects the important work undertaken by FIFA in relation to the protection of minors and has fully cooperated with FIFA throughout its investigation.
“Initially, Chelsea was charged under Articles 19.1 and 19.3 in relation to 92 players.
“We welcome the fact that FIFA has accepted that there was no breach in relation to 63 of these players, but the club is extremely disappointed that FIFA has not accepted the club’s submissions in relation to the remaining 29 players.
“Chelsea acted in accordance with the relevant regulations and will shortly be submitting its appeal to FIFA.”
The FA were also fined, with the English governing body ordered to pay 510,000 Swiss Francs.