FIFA’s ethics tribunal said Saturday it had provided Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini with the reasons for its decision to ban them from football for eight years, clearing the way for them to appeal against the decision.
“The adjudicatory chamber of the independent Ethics Committee ... has notified Mr Joseph S. Blatter and Mr Michel Platini of the grounds for the decisions passed in December 2015,” the body said in a statement.
In December, it banned the FIFA president and vice president from football for eight years, saying they had abused their positions over a $2 million payment made to Platini in 2011 for work carried out between 1999 and 2002.
Blatter, who has headed FIFA since 1998, was also fined 50,000 Swiss francs (USD 50,000/46,300 euros) while Platini, the head of UEFA, Europe’s governing body, was fined 80,000 Swiss francs.
At the time of the verdict, which heightened further the crisis rocking football’s scandal-plagued world body, the court insisted there was “no legal basis” for the payment that Blatter authorised for Platini in 2011.
The tribunal did not provide further details Saturday of the reasoning behind its decision.
Instead it stressed it had now “fulfilled its commitment to provide the grounds for the respective decisions to Mr Blatter and Mr Platini within the first half of January 2016.”
“After receiving the grounds for the decisions, both officials may lodge an appeal with the FIFA Appeal Committee,” the statement said.
If that appeal is rejected, the two men can appeal further to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), the highest tribunal in sports.