Belfast Telegraph

Liverpool's Mamadou Sakho has alleged failed drug test dismissed by UEFA

By Gary Fennelly

Liverpool defender Mamadou Sakho has had a doping case against him dismissed by UEFA after being suspended in April.

The France defender served a 30-day ban for allegedly failing a drugs test taken after Liverpool’s Europa League tie at Manchester United on March 17.

The European governing body met earlier this week to discuss the alleged failed drug test. UEFA has now confirmed that proceedings against the 26-year-old defender have been dismissed.

Sakho had admitted taking a 'fat burner' slimming pill which he believed did not contain any substance that breached the rules.

It is thought that Sakho’s legal team successfully argued that he took no substance that should be deemed illegal and on Friday he was exonerated.

Sakho missed the Europa League final and Euro 2016 because of the charges. He can now resume his career.

A UEFA statement said: "The independent UEFA Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body (CEDB) met in Paris and has reached a decision relating to the proceedings instigated against Liverpool FC player Mamadou Sakho, following the UEFA Europa League round of 16 second-leg match between Manchester United FC and Liverpool FC (1-1), played on 17 March 2016.

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"The proceedings against Mr Sakho related to a violation of the UEFA Anti-Doping Regulations after the player failed a doping test at the above-mentioned match.

"Following a hearing with the lawyers of the player and experts of the WADA-accredited laboratories on this case, the CEDB has decided to dismiss the case."

Sakho said: "I am happy that this is finally over. It's been a difficult time for me but I knew I had done nothing wrong.

"I am looking forward to getting back in the team and playing again."

Liverpool said in a statement: "Liverpool Football Club welcomes today’s decision from UEFA to dismiss the case against Mamadou Sakho, confirming that he did not commit any doping violation. We are pleased for Mamadou that he can now resume his playing career."

Liverpool fans watching Friday's pre-season friendly against Tranmere Rovers at Prenton Park greeted the news by chanting Sakho's name. The player was left out of that match but is expected to face Fleetwood on Wednesday.

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