Platini 'fighting against injustice' as he appeals eight-year ban

Banned UEFA president Michel Platini left his FIFA Appeal Committee hearing "quite happy" and has set his sights on clearing his name in time for EURO 2016.

Platini

Source: AFP



Platini was banned in December for eight years from all football-related activity over a "disloyal payment" of $2.6 million made to him in 2011 which had been signed off by then FIFA president Sepp Blatter.

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Platini began his appeal against the ban in Zurich and was pleased with how the hearing had gone, so far.

"It has been a really good hearing, it has been very well conducted by people who have been sincere and I'm quite happy about how it went," he said.

"Now, their interpretation - we'll see how it will go, I don't know what they are going to do, but I'm quite happy with how it went 

"I'm fighting on that [the presidency], I'm fighting for that, I'm fighting to be left in peace, to be, not exonerated, because I don't like to say this word, but I'm fighting to go against the injustice of the people who took my job away."

The 60-year-old hopes victory in his appeal could see him back at the helm of European football this season, ahead of the Euro 2016 tournament in his home nation.

He added: "I hope to go back to work as soon as possible, I hope to go back to the office as soon as the decision has been given by the appeal commission and then, well, prepare [for] EURO [2016]. 

"There are things to do that are important; it's been several months that I've not been working. 

"I always tried to be reasonable regarding the decisions, regarding especially UEFA, so I'm waiting to go back, to work on the Euro, this beautiful European football party which will take place in a country called France."

Blatter is also appealing against his own eight-year ban, with his case to be heard on Tuesday (local time).

If Platini fails to have his sanction overturned, it is likely he would take his fight to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) with Blatter poised to do the same.

Platini continued: "Is it Blatter who put me in this situation? Not at all, he is in the same situation as me. Someone pushed the button and I will try to find out who."

UEFA stated last month that it will not hold an election for their presidency until Platini's appeals process has been exhausted. The FIFA appeals committee, which is chaired by Larry Mussenden, the president of the Bermuda Football Association, has the power to reduce, increase or overturn the ban imposed in December.



As well as the ban, Platini was fined $100,000 by the adjudicatory chamber of FIFA's ethics committee after being found guilty of breaching the world governing body's code of ethics.

The ethics committee's investigatory chamber has also confirmed that it is appealing against the sanctions imposed on Platini and Blatter on the grounds that they are too lenient.

The charges found proven included offering and accepting gifts, conflict of interest, and violating their fiduciary duty to FIFA.

Both Platini and Blatter said the payment was made following a verbal agreement between the pair when the Frenchman worked for Blatter from 1998 to 2002, though it was not paid until nine years later.

That explanation was rejected as ''not convincing'' by the ethics committee, though it did add the evidence had not been sufficient to secure charges of corruption.


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Published 16 February 2016 at 12:05am
Source: PA Sport