By DAN KARELL
Luis Suarez’s final appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport was decided upon on Thursday, and the result was a win-win for all parties involved.
The court upheld FIFA’s four-month suspension of Suarez but said that it only applied to official matches, leaving the Uraguayan free to join his new Barcelona teammates in training, to be officially introduced by the club, and to play in the club’s friendly matches before his suspension ends on Oct. 26.
Suarez now could debut for Barcelona as early as Monday, in the club’s final preseason match in the Joan Gamper trophy against Mexican side Club Leon.
While the court said that the FIFA suspensions were “generally proportionate” to Suarez’s actions, it called the complete the ban from all soccer activities “excessive.”
”However, the 4-month suspension will apply to official matches only and no longer to other football-related activities (such as training, promotional activities and administrative matters),” the court wrote in a statement.
The court did fully uphold FIFA’s international ban on Suarez, ruling him out of next summer’s Copa America as well as the start of Uruguay’s World Cup qualifying campaign. Suarez is still suspended for another eight international matches.
On June 24, Suarez was caught on video biting Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini in Uruguay’s 1-0 World Cup group stage victory over the Italians. Suarez was not disciplined by the referee but was suspended by FIFA prior to his next game. Suarez initially denied biting Chiellini but a few days later admitted his actions and apologized for it.
What do you think of the ruling? Agree with it? Think that the initial suspension was too harsh? Think they should have repealed the suspensions fully?
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