UEFA have banned Osasuna from the 2023/2024 Europa Conference League


UEFA have banned Osasuna from the 2023/2024 Europa Conference League

Spanish club Osasuna will not play in next season's Europa Conference League because of a decade-old match fixing scandal.

Jagoba Elustondo's side, who finished seventh in La Liga last season, confirmed on Tuesday that UEFA, the governing body of European football, have excluded them from the third-tier European club competition.

In a statement on their official website, they wrote: "The UEFA Appeals Committee has made the decision today to leave Club Atlético Osasuna out of the 2023-2024 Conference League.

"The members of the UEFA Appeals Committee have not taken into account the allegations presented by the entity last Friday and have reaffirmed the initial opinion of the inspectors of the UEFA Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Committee."

It continued: "The reasons why the Appeals Committee has decided to exclude Osasuna will be transferred to the entity in the coming days.

"Club Atlético Osasuna does not share at all the criteria of UEFA or the investigation of the case carried out and regrets the wrong message that UEFA sends to the world of football punishing those who denounce corruption and prosecute it in court.

"Lastly, Club Atlético Osasuna will continue to deploy all the legal instruments at its disposal to stand up to UEFA and put an end to what it considers a serious violation of its rights."

Osasuna officials who are no longer with the club were implicated in fixing matches between 2012 and 2014.

A trial in early 2020 convicted several of their former directors and a decision was 'welcomed' by the administration that succeeded them.

That being said, UEFA’s competition rules state that teams implicated in fixing any game played since April 2007 can be removed from the next competition for which they qualify.

Osasuna, who had not qualified for a UEFA competition since the 2006/07 season, earned a place in the playoff round of the Europa Conference League after finishing seventh.

After one of the best campaigns in their history. the club needed to beat one opponent in August to advance to the group stage.

Osasuna say they will continue to explore all legal options to be able to play in Europe next season.

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