Friday, January 28, 2022

Rennes claim ´unilateral´ Spurs postponement not confirmed by UEFA

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 8 Dec 2021

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Rennes have contested Tottenham’s announcement of their Europa Conference League game being postponed, claiming it to be a “unilateral” decision that is yet to be ratified by UEFA.

Spurs released a statement on Wednesday informing the public of an apparent agreement to postpone Thursday’s visit of Rennes due to a coronavirus outbreak.

Antonio Conte revealed earlier in the day that eight players and five members of staff had tested positive for the illness. As a result, Spurs have shut their first-team training facility.

UEFA rules state teams must fulfil a fixture in the competition if they have 13 players, plus a goalkeeper, available for selection.

But Conte claimed Spurs only have 11 players to choose from, with the club subsequently indicating the Group G showdown had been postponed.

However, Rennes have cast doubt over the situation and accused Spurs of seemingly changing their minds about fulfilling the fixture after the Ligue 1 club had landed in London.

A Rennes statement read: “Following the press release published by Tottenham at 21:00 this Wednesday, Stade Rennais FC would like to clarify the following facts.

“In a video conference at 19:45 between representatives of UEFA, Tottenham and Rennes, the Spurs director of football announced their intention not to play the UEFA Europa Conference League game, [on] Thursday evening, [a] unilateral decision which has not been confirmed by UEFA in any way.

“The Tottenham representative did not want to announce the number of players affected by COVID-19 when the rule states that a match must be played as long as the team has 13 outfielders and a keeper.

“They argued for a decision by the English authorities without advancing any official document. As the match was not officially cancelled by UEFA, Rennes upheld their decision to play.

“Faced with this ‘London fog’, Rennes reserves the right to approach UEFA. This lack of fair play is all the more glaring as Tottenham had confirmed by email that the match would be held at the start of the afternoon before warning Rennes of their intention not to play just after their landing in London.”

Rennes are already assured of top spot in Group G, while second-place Tottenham are level on seven points with Vitesse, who host bottom side Mura on Thursday in the final round of group fixtures.

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