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Scottish ban warning over Rangers


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Scottish ban warning over Rangers

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Scottish football could face a ban after Rangers challenged the national association

Scottish football could face an international ban after Rangers challenged the SFA's transfer sanctions in the courts, it has been warned.

A judge overturned Rangers' one year transfer ban and a £100,000 fine for bringing the game into disrepute.

The SFA is considering its response, which could mean alternative sanctions.

But sports lawyer Dr Gregory Ioannidis said if further punishment is not imposed for the court challenge, Fifa could ban all Scottish clubs.

The articles of world governing body Fifa and Uefa state that association decisions cannot be challenged in an ordinary court.

“Start Quote

Fifa can penalise both the Scottish association and the individual clubs and the national team of Scotland ”

End Quote Dr Gregory Ioannidis Sport lawyer

Prior to the Court of Session decision on Tuesday, Fifa said it wanted Rangers' request withdrawn from the ordinary courts.

Lord Glennie said the transfer ban should be reconsidered by the SFA appeal panel on the grounds it was not one of the sanctions listed in the association's own regulations.

Rangers administrators Duff and Phelps said the club's position had been vindicated and that they would study the judgement and consider their course of action.

The disrepute charge was handed down mainly over the club's failure to pay more than £13m in taxes last season.

The SFA said it was surprised by the Court of Session verdict and would consult its legal advisers. Options it can consider over the disrepute charge include a further fine, suspension from the Scottish Cup and expulsion from the game.

Dr Ioannidis, one of Europe's top experts on sports law, told the BBC's Newsnight Scotland the court challenge could also have wider implications for the game.

He said: "It's going to be damaging for Scottish football.

"If the Scottish Football Association decide not to take action against Rangers in relation to Rangers submitting the application to the Court of Session then Fifa can penalise both the Scottish association and the individual clubs and the national team of Scotland and impose an international ban on all of them."

Dr Ioannidis said Fifa had threatened such bans in the recent past, including in the case of FC Sion.

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