·23 de junio de 2023
·23 de junio de 2023
UEFA giveth and UEFA taketh away in the case of Osasuna’s place in the 2023/24 Europa Conference League.
The Spanish league outfit had qualified for the European competition after finishing in seventh place in La Liga, however, it’s believed that match-fixing accusations from the 2013/14 season have come back to haunt the club from Pamplona.
‘Club Atletico Osasuna learned, this afternoon, of the conclusions of the report drawn up by the inspectors of the UEFA Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Committee. In said report, the inspectors declare the “ineligibility of the club to participate in the UEFA Conference League 2023-2024”, thus denying it the right to participate in European competitions that it has earned fairly on the pitch,’ the club wrote on its official website.
‘The reason goes back to some events that occurred in the 2013-2014 season and which, in the opinion of UEFA, contravene its article 4.1g of the competition regulations. Said article says the following:
“Not having been directly and/or indirectly involved, since the entry into force of Article 50(3) of the UEFA Statutes, that is, on April 27, 2007, in any activity intended to organize or influence the result of a match.”
‘The UEFA inspectors consider that the ruling of the Supreme Court that condemns several former directors of the rojilla entity is sufficient reason to exclude Osasuna, nine years after the events, from European competitions.’
Their El Sadar ground would surely have been full to bursting each time a European opponent played there next season, but it’s likely that the club won’t get the chance to enjoy games across the continent unless their appeal to UEFA succeeds.
Osasuna were strong in the response to the governing body’s sanction.
‘Strong with the weak and weak with the strong, the UEFA courts have not wanted to take into account that it was the Spanish courts themselves who have literally declared that Osasuna has been the victim of the diversion of money carried out by some of its former directors behind the back of the highest governing body of the entity, the Assembly, and the control mechanisms of the club itself,’ they added.
Their ire is perfectly understandable, and Football Espana note that eighth placed finishers in La Liga last season, Athletic Club, are now on standby to take Osasuna’s place in the competition if the original decision is upheld.
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As has been seen in the first two editions of the competition, though it may be seen as the little brother to the Champions League and Europa League, that hasn’t made it any less popular with clubs or their supporters.
One only has to look at the joy that winning brought to both AS Roma and West Ham United to understand that.
Sadly for Osasuna, it doesn’t look like they’ll be able to enjoy such an experience.