Barcelona's new sporting director figure Carles Rexach says the transfer ban imposed on the club by FIFA is "the biggest nonsense I have seen in recent years."
Barca are currently unable to sign players until January 2016, after being found guilty of multiple breaches of the regulations regarding the signing of foreign youngsters, in a punishment initially deferred but finally upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
The Catalan club denied any wrongdoing when the charges were first brought, but eventually accepted at least some wrongdoing, while saying that the excellent treatment minors receive in their La Masia youth system should be taken into account.
Speaking at a book launch, former Barca player and coach Rexach said that punishing the club for providing kids with such an education is difficult to understand.
"If I look at it calmly, and without entering into legal matters, it is the biggest nonsense I have seen in recent years," Rexach said. "The people who know La Masia know how well the kids are looked after, how they have to study, and any father would be delighted for his son to go there. This new law came out and we are in a difficult moment, but there are things that I do not understand."
FIFA has also opened investigations into other La Liga clubs, including Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid, having similarly brought youngsters from all over the world into their youth systems.
Barca remain the only club to have been formally charged over this matter, and Blaugrana president Josep Maria Bartomeu recently suggested he would prefer a general amnesty and clarification of the regulations going forward.
Last week, Rexach was appointed as a member of Barca's new Football Area Technical Commission, alongside ex-AC Milan director Ariedo Braida and current club directors Jordi Mestre and Javier Bordas. This body forms part of a new backroom structure put together by Bartomeu following Andoni Zubizarreta's firing as sporting director in January.
FIFA has recently accepted that Barca can technically sign players despite the current ban, but will still be unable to register them to play until January 2016.
This has opened up the possibility that the club will look to at least secure agreements with players ahead of that date -- particularly with presidential elections planned for the Camp Nou this summer.