This article explains what to do if, during players' registration process, you come across two or more potential duplicates of your new record and they seem to be identical to each other (e.g. records of the same person you tried to register).
Note that the article is not intended to influence the registration process of a given Member Association. The goal is to increase the quality of data by letting other Member Associations know that they have duplicates so that they can take necessary steps to remove the problem.
Although most of the person registrations are successful, the system will occasionally return potential duplicate(s). The operator of the system is then faced with a decision whether those are true duplicates or so called false positives. This decision is based on the information provided, like names, photos, registrations history, etc. The concept of a deduplication screen is well explained in the article Building user interface for duplicate resolution.
Additional information to be used to make a decision about whether a potential duplicate is a true positive, e.g. the same person, include looking up whether the player exists in TMS, contacting the other Member Association in question, the club where the player is registered, the player himself, and web research (e.g. transfermarkt.com, wikipedia.org).
But what to do if 2 or more matches are returned and they seem to be true positives (records of the same person)?
All potential duplicates returned have different FIFA_IDs. If the records seem identical, it indicates that the data is already duplicated. Therefore, the two existing records need to be merged before you proceed, ideally by the affected Member Associations.
If such a situation happens, we ask you to open a ticket in our Support Portal or write an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. It's important that you indicate FIFA_IDs of both/all records and ideally include a screenshot from your system. We will contact the respective Member Associations and help them resolve the problem.
When it comes to your registration, we recommend that you wait with the registration process until the other MAs perform the merge.
Only in worst case, e.g. if for whatever reason the assignment of the FIFA_ID cannot wait, take over one of the FIFA_IDs (chose one of the duplicates). Please note, in such a case you will be later contacted later if the record you took over is to be merged, and you might need to manually update the FIFA_ID of the concerning person in your database.
As a rule, if there are two duplicate records, the older one (i.e., the one registered earlier) should be considered "primary." Therefore, if the assignment of the FIFA_ID cannot wait, we recommend using the date of the registration in Connect ID (this information comes with each potential duplicate since March 2023 but you need to upgrade your SDK) to determine which record is the older one and, therefore, the primary one. Refer to our SDK documentation for technical details. More on this topic can be found here: Merging: how to decide which record is primary?