Much to the chagrin of the players’ union, club presidents decided to change the rules at a board meeting on Friday.
The representatives of the clubs decided, this Friday during the board of directors of the National League, the next steps of reform of which a final decision will be taken at the end of March. Seven foreigners may be found on the ice in particular …
The big news therefore concerns the mercenaries. While the National League players were against 90%, the “Regulations for players of foreign nationality in the National League” was adopted on Friday. If the current regime will apply unchanged during the next financial year, from the 2022/23 season, a maximum of seven players of foreign nationality may be fielded per match. At the same time, the “Swiss license” status will be limited to players of foreign nationality under the age of 22. In other words, if they are not eligible for the national team, they will no longer be considered as a Swiss player.
This solution should allow players of foreign nationality who have been trained in the Swiss junior leagues for at least five years to acquire the Swiss passport and thus qualify for selection in the Swiss national teams.
In addition, there was also discussion of the overhaul, including issues of membership of the league, financial fair play and regulations relating to agents. In addition to the organizational arrangements of the newly founded National League SA, these subjects are defined in principle in the Shareholders’ Agreement. While the latter have agreed on the content of their Convention, the details still need to be worked out in the other regulations. This will be done during the month of February 2021, so that the final adjustments can be made in early March 2021 with the clubs. The objective is to achieve approval of these adjustments and signature of the Shareholders Agreement by the end of March 2021.
The board of directors also decided on Friday that the current National League championship would end in any case before the start of the Ice Hockey World Championship. In the current state of planning and subject to subsequent decisions, the following deadlines now apply:
End of the regular season: April 5, 2021.
Start of pre-play-offs: April 7, 2021.
Start of play-off; April 13, 2021.
The updated match schedule will be published within the next week.