Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 28 December 2014

Hoops still in Euro top tier as Legia lose appeal

Celtic have retained their Champions League place after Legia Warsaw's appeal against their exclusion was dismissed by Uefa. Legia were found to have fielded an ineligible player, Bartosz Bereszynski, in the second leg of their third qualifying round clash against the Glasgow giants which they won 2-0 to follow a 4-1 first-leg success. Celtic were duly awarded a 3-0 win and progressed on away goals.

The Polish side's appeal was heard by Uefa's Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body and after receiving the decision yesterday, club owner Dariusz Mioduski wrote on Twitter: "Unfortunately for now football is not winning... We are going to CAS."

The verdict was confirmed in a Uefa statement, which read: "The Uefa Appeals Body met yesterday after an appeal by Legia Warszawa against the decision taken by the Uefa Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body on August 8.

"The appeal lodged by the Polish club was rejected and, therefore, the original decision of the Uefa Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body is confirmed."

Legia president Boguslaw Lesnodorski echoed Mioduski's pledge to take the matter to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

He wrote on Twitter: "Negative decision, it's hard even to comment, we are using the CAS (we plan to tomorrow) and otherwise we are focused only on the games."

Legia believed Bereszynski's suspension had been served after he missed both legs of the previous qualifier against St Patrick's Athletic as well as the first leg against Celtic, but failed to register him.

Celtic will face Slovenians Maribor in the play-offs, leaving Legia to take on Aktobe of Kazakhstan in the Europa League play-off.

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