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Blatter to appeal against eight-year ban

Sepp Blatter will appeal against his eight-year suspension from football, his legal team has confirmed.

The FIFA president was banned along with UEFA counterpart Michel Platini by FIFA’s Independent Ethics Committee as a result of an alleged “disloyal payment” in 2011.

FIFA cleared both men of corruption charges but stated that Blatter could not demonstrate “a legal basis for this payment”, prompting the decision to suspend the duo.

Blatter was quick to label the ban “unjust” and his legal team confirmed an appeal will be launched.

“President Blatter will appeal the decision of the Adjudicatory Chamber to the Appeal Committee,” a statement released on Tuesday confirmed.

“While the decision announced yesterday confirmed that there was no corruption or bribery, president Blatter is eager to present his arguments to the Appeal Committee that the remaining charges must also fail because the evidence clearly demonstrates the relationship with Mr. Platini was in all respects appropriate.

“President Blatter is prepared to take all legal steps to prevail on the remaining charges and clear his name.”

Blatter had described the payment made to Platini as “a gentleman’s agreement”, insisting it was nothing untoward despite the lack of written documentation to support it.

Former UEFA general secretary Gerhard Aigner has accused Blatter of having “no respect for the rules” but suggested Platini should not have been issued a punishment of the same severity.

“I don’t think you can put Blatter and Platini in the same boat,” he told talkSPORT. “Being close to Blatter meant Platini became part of his system. He was taking operational decisions and there was no more control from his executive committee over what he was doing.”

Tue 22 Dec, 2015
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