Embattled UEFA president, Michel Platini has resigned as head of European football governing body, after losing an appeal to overturn his six-year ban at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Sport’s highest tribunal, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), panel on Monday upheld Platini’s suspension. It however reduced the ban to four years.
CAS also reduced his fine from CHF 80,000 (€70,000) to CHF 60,000 (€55,000), but maintained he was right to be punished and had taken into account “the absence of any repentance” and the impact of the saga on FIFA’s reputation.
“The CAS Panel was of the opinion that a severe sanction could be justified in view of the superior functions carried out by Mr. Platini (FIFA Vice-President and UEFA President), the absence of any repentance and the impact that this matter has had on FIFA’s reputation,” CAS said in a statement.
Platini called the verdict a “deep injustice” and said he will now step down from the UEFA position he has held since 2007.
“I note today’s decision by the Court of Arbitration for Sport but I consider it a profound injustice,” he said in a statement.
“This decision inflicts a suspension for which the length stops me, de facto, and by luck, from being a candidate in the next FIFA presidential election.
“As agreed with the national associations, I resign as president of UEFA to pursue my fight before the Swiss courts to prove my probity in this case.
“Life has always kept beautiful surprises for me, now I am free to live them,” added the former French football star.
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Platini was initially banned for eight years by a FIFA disciplinary committee over a £1.3m payment given to him by then-FIFA president Sepp Blatter in 2011. The pair claimed the money was for work Platini did for Blatter between 1998-2002.
UEFA said Monday that it will not appoint an interim leader as it’s Executive Committee will now meet on May 18 to begin the process of replacing Platini.
Their statement read: “UEFA has taken note of the decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport to suspend UEFA President Michel Platini from any football-related activity for four years.
“We have also taken note of Michel Platini’s statement announcing his intention to resign as UEFA President. The UEFA Executive Committee will meet on the morning of 18 May in Basel to discuss next steps, including the scheduling of an elective congress.
“In the meantime, there will be no UEFA President appointed ad interim.”