Fenerbahçe chairman Yıldırım gives five-hour testimony against UEFA match-fixing ban
Fenerbahçe chairman Aziz Yıldırım was at UEFA’s headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland yesterday to give his defense against a match-fixing ban. AA PhotoFenerbahçe chairman Aziz Yıldırım has given a five-hour testimony at a hearing to contest the suspension handed to the club by UEFA as a penalty for match-fixing. Yıldırım testified at the European football’s governing body’s headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland, as part of Fenerbahçe’s appeal against a two-year ban from continental competition.
Last month, Fenerbahçe, along with Istanbul rival Beşiktaş, was handed a suspension from European competitions for their involvement in the manipulation of Turkish football matches.
Yıldırım’s testimony reportedly lasted for around five hours. The club’s executives said that UEFA would adopt its definitive decision on July 15. “The Discipline Committee presented us with new evidences and we gave our defenses against it. It was a good and important hearing. We told them that we were confident with our own evidences,” Deniz Tolga Aytöre told reporters just after the end of the hearing.
If the appeal is not upheld, Fenerbahçe will apply to the Court of Arbitration of Sport (CAS) as a last resort.
Fenerbahçe was charged with some of its board members’ attempting to manipulate some games from the 2010-2011 Super League, while Beşiktaş was charged with its officials’ attempting to fix the Turkish Cup final.
The two clubs’ officials were handed prison sentences by an Istanbul court in the Turkish judiciary process, but the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) decided not to punish the teams, saying that even though there were efforts to manipulate some games, they had not been reflected on the pitch.
UEFA then opened its own investigation. Beşiktaş has also appealed against its one-year ban and will make its defense today.