Juventus have been docked 15 points following an investigation into the club’s past transfer dealings, Italy’s football federation (FIGC) says.
The Serie A giants were accused of fixing their balance sheets by artificial gains from club transfers. Juventus had been in third place but the penalty will drop them to 10th
The club’s board of directors, including former president Andrea Agnelli and vice-president Pavel Nedved, resigned in November. Juventus have denied any wrongdoing and confirmed they will appeal the decision.
In a statement, the club said they “await the publication of the reasons of the decision” but have started bringing an appeal to the Sport Guarantee Board of the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI).
The FIGC’s sanction is tougher than the nine-point deduction prosecutors had requested.Juve’s former sports director Fabio Paratici, now Tottenham’s managing director of football, has been banned for 30 months. The FIGC has also hit Agnelli and the club’s former chief executive Maurizio Arrivabene with two-year bans, while current sports director Federico Cherubini has been given a 16-month ban.
A total of 11 former and current Juventus executives have received sanctions, with Nedved given an eight-month ban, The FIGC says all the bans include a request for the sanction to be extended to Uefa and Fifa and therefore then apply worldwide. Juventus were initially acquitted alongside 10 other clubs, including current Serie A leaders Napoli, in April 2012.
Paratici and Agnelli were among 59 individuals to also be cleared. The investigation was reopened in December after the federal prosecutor decided to appeal that ruling. It followed new evidence from a separate investigation into Juve’s finances conducted by prosecutors in Turin. The request to reopen the trial and apply sanctions concerned nine of the original 11 clubs investigated, including Serie A sides Juventus, Sampdoria and Empoli, as well as 52 of the executives at those clubs. Juventus’ lawyers said the FIGC’s sanctions “constitute a clear disparity of treatment against Juventus and its managers compared to any other company or member”.
They added: “We point out, as of now, that only Juventus and its managers are attributed the violation of a rule, that the same sports justice had repeatedly recognised that it did not exist. “We believe that this is also a blatant injustice towards millions of fans, who we trust will soon be remedied in the next degree of judgement.”
In a statement in November, the outgoing board said their resignations were “considered to be in the best social interest to recommend that Juventus equip itself with a new board of directors to address these issues”. Juventus won nine Serie A titles in a row during Agnelli’s 13-year tenure, but finished fourth last season and made a 254m euro (£220m) loss – a record in Italy.
A new board of directors was approved at a Juventus shareholders meeting on Wednesday, with Gianluca Ferrero replacing him as chairman.
Juventus are also facing an investigation from Uefa over potential breaches of its club licensing and financial fair play regulations, which was announced last month. Juve’s next league game is at home to Atalanta on Sunday.