Fenerbahce loses Champs League spot in UEFA appeal
Fenerbahce has lost its appeal to UEFA against expulsion from
this season’s Champions League for match-fixing, and the Turkish
club can now ask sports’ highest court for an emergency ruling.
Announcing verdicts Monday, UEFA said its appeals panel upheld
an earlier disciplinary verdict that club officials helped fix
matches in its 2010-11 league title run.
Fenerbahce finished runner-up in the Turkish Super Lig last
season and would have entered the Champions League third qualifying
round, needing to beat two opponents to advance to the lucrative
The draw is scheduled for Friday and Bursaspor should now take
the second Turkish entry. Champion Galatasaray goes directly into
the 32-team group stage being drawn next month.
Fenerbahce, which was also expelled from the Champions League
two years ago, can challenge UEFA’s verdict at the Court of
Arbitration for Sport.
Club officials, including president Aziz Yildirim, deny
wrongdoing and are appealing their criminal convictions in Turkish
With Fenerbahce banned, third-placd Beziktas could have taken
its Istanbul rival’s vacant Champions League place. However, UEFA
has also dismissed Beziktas’s appeal against suspension for fixing
the 2011 Turkish Cup final, leaving the entry clear for
fourth-place Bursaspor. Besiktas could also appeal to CAS.
Fenerbahce also remains banned for an additional year of UEFA’s
club competitions when it next qualifies.
UEFA said Fenerbahce’s appeal was partially admitted because a
deferred suspension for a third season was annulled following the
hearing held last Wednesday. UEFA took several days to confirm the