Major League Soccer (MLS) has sanctioned Inter Miami CF with a record fine of $2 million after an investigation found the club violating the league’s salary budget and roster regulations. The American premier football organization on Friday announced sanctions against the David Beckham co-owned Inter Miami as an outcome of an investigation that was launched after the signing of Blaise Matuidi from Juventus.
Along with the 2018 World Cup winner, Andres Reyes was also included in an incorrect roster categorization for players, who should have instead occupied a designated player slot. The investigation, which began in August 2020, also revealed the violations of undisclosed agreements resulting in the underreporting of salary budget amounts for certain players.
Besides the $2 million penalty, MLS also imposed a reduction of $2,271,250 in allocation money for the 2022 and 2023 seasons and a $250,000 fine to Managing Owner Jorge Mas. Paul McDonough, Inter Miami’s COO and Sporting Director at the time of the infringement, has been suspended until the end of the 2022 MLS season, as well as fired from Atlanta United, who came in as the club’s Vice President of Soccer Operations.
Although certain members of the club were held accountable for the violation, none of the players were subject to investigation, with their salary and contracts remaining in full force. The investigation found no wrongdoing on the part of Inter Miami owners Marcelo Claure, Masayoshi Son, Jose Mas, and David Beckham.
MLS Commissioner Don Garber addressed on the severity of the situation and how everyone is required to adhere to the rules and regulations to protect the integrity of MLS. “These sanctions reflect the severity of Inter Miami’s violations, should encourage complete cooperation by all parties in future investigations and will serve as a deterrent for clubs from violating roster rules,” he added.
Inter Miami managing director Jorge Mas issued a statement where he said: “Inter Miami CF acknowledges that the Club violated Major League Soccer’s roster rules in our first season.”