Greece facing suspension threat

Published: Thursday 23rd April 2015 by The News Editor

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UEFA’s general secretary Gianni Infantino has warned that there will be no choice but to suspend Greece from international football unless the country’s government rescinds proposed new laws.

The Greek government has put forward a bill which could see sporting events cancelled due to incidents of crowd violence and teams prohibited from playing in European competition.

UEFA and FIFA say that is direct government interference in football and have threatened to suspend Greece.

Infantino said: “Sadly there will be no other choice than to suspend the Greek Football Federation if this new legislation is passed because football does not allow government interference.

“There are currently three other countries, outside of Europe, which are currently facing similar issues – Indonesia, Pakistan and Zimbabwe. I think people in Greece should be very concerned because a suspension will have a serious impact on their football.

“Don’t forget that it will affect more than the national team. If your clubs don’t play in our competitions, their coefficient will also drop, meaning that less teams can qualify for the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League.”

UEFA and FIFA sent a final letter of warning on Wednesday but the Greek government is refusing to back down.

Greece’s deputy sports minister Stavros Kontonis told Greek television on Wednesday night: “We are not going to change the philosophy of the sports bill. The supervision exercised in Greek football by FIFA and UEFA has failed.”

Published: Thursday 23rd April 2015 by The News Editor

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