Chelsea may be able to sign new players in January following a positive outcome to their appeal over a FIFA-imposed transfer ban to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
The Stamford Bridge club were told they would not be permitted to register any new players until 2011 back in September.
FIFA imposed the transfer ban after finding the Blues guilty of illegally inducing French player Gael Kakuta to breach his contract with former club Lens to join them.
Chelsea appealed the decision to CAS and, following an interim ruling, could now be permitted to sign new players when the next transfer window opens in January as the Lausanne-based court is not expected to make a full ruling on the case until the new year.
"The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has granted the request for a stay filed by Chelsea Football Club Ltd and Mr Gael Kakuta in relation to the decision taken by the FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber on 27 August 2009," read a statement from CAS.
"The FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber imposed, inter alia, a restriction of four months' ineligibility on Mr Gael Kakuta, and Chelsea Football Club Ltd was banned from registering any new players, either nationally or internationally, for the next two complete, consecutive registration periods.
"Such sanctions are now stayed until the CAS renders its final decision in this matter."