Wednesday, 4 April 2007

FIGC counters Catania appeal

The Italian Football Federation (FIGC) has announced it will appeal against the Catania tribunal’s decision to allow fans into the home games.

The verdict from the TAR civil court on a case brought by 82 fans overturns the Disciplinary Commission’s ban on letting supporters into the matches to be played on neutral turf for the rest of the season.

However, under new laws the civil courts should not have jurisdiction over sporting matters, unless it is the Lazio TAR in Rome.

"We are truly surprised by the decision of the Catania TAR tribunal, just two months after the tragic events in which chief inspector Filippo Raciti lost his life," noted FIGC President Giancarlo Abete.

"We have great respect for all the verdicts of the Italian justice system, but at the same time we intend to reaffirm the autonomy of the sporting world.

"We will appeal to the laws set by the State which mark out a precise path for legal action taken against the Federation. The FIGC will therefore immediately take the most opportune steps under the procedural and legal profiles."

Catania were sentenced to play the rest of their home matches this term at a neutral closed-door venue after seeing their Stadio Massimino banned until June 30.

The decision was as a consequence of the riots which led to the death of chief inspector Raciti following the derby against Palermo in February.

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