Bursaspor’s way to Europe cleared

Bursaspor’s way to Europe cleared

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Bursaspor’s way to Europe cleared

İbrahim Yazıcı. DHA photo

A top sports court has cleared the way for Bursaspor to compete in the European competition next season, lifting an earlier ban by the European football’s governing body UEFA.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruled on June 22 that Spor Toto Super League club Bursaspor should be able to play in the Europa League next season, but fined the club for 250,000 euros.

Bursaspor, who was also set to play in the Europa League qualifiers after finishing fifth in the league, was left out of the European competition by the UEFA in late May, along with Beşiktaş and Gazinatepspor, for failure to pay the fee for Zambian forward Collins Mbesuma. Mbesuma, who was signed from Portsmouth in the 2007-2008 season, has played just six games for Bursaspor.

Bursaspor board member İrfan Koç said the CAS ruling “served justice.”

“We had a great defense in front of the court yesterday,” Koç was quoted as saying by Doğan news agency on June 22. “With the documents and information we provided to the court, we were able to convince the judges that the ban was unfair.”

Koç noted that the problem was not only a place in Europa Cup, but that Bursaspor fight the ban to save its prestigious reputation.

The CAS’s decision to lift Bursaspor’s ban has also raised Beşiktaş’s hopes for a similar decision. UEFA banned Beşiktaş for one year and fined them 200,000 euros due to financial problems at the Istanbul club, including for the delays in payments made to players. CAS is expected to hear Beşiktaş’s appeal early next month.

Galatasaray and Trabzonspor were cleared to play in European competitions next season.