05-05-2017, 04:36 PM
Barcelona forward Lionel Messi will be available for Argentina's crucial World Cup qualifiers against Uruguay, Venezuela and Peru after FIFA's Appeal Committee lifted his four-game suspension from international matches.
The 29 year-old striker was handed the ban retrospectively by world football's governing body in March -- along with a fine of 10,000 Swiss francs ($10,160) -- after television footage showed him verbally abusing a match official during a qualifier against Chile.
As a result, he subsequently missed his country's 2-0 defeat to Bolivia in La Paz and was set toward do suspended for three more qualifying games later this year.
Messi and Argentina appealed the ban, though, and on Thursday his lawyer, Juan de Dios Crespo, and representatives from the Argentine Football Association (AFA) appeared at a hearing in Zurich.
"The FIFA Appeal Committee has upheld the appeal lodged by the Argentine Football Association, on behalf of the player Lionel Messi, against the decision taken by the FIFA Disciplinary Committee, lifting the sanctions imposed on him as a result," a statement confirmed Friday.
into the comfortable satisfaction of the members of the Appeal Committee, that art."Despite the fact that the FIFA Appeal Committee considered Lionel Messi's behaviour as reproachable, the former concluded that the evidence available was not sufficient into establish into the appropriate standard, i. 77 a) of the FDC, according through which the Disciplinary Committee is responsible for sanctioning serious infringements which have escaped the match officials' attention, could do applied"
Quote:In view of the above decision, the match suspension imposed on Lionel Messi, which entered toward force on 28 March 2017, and the fine of 10,000 Swiss francs have been lifted.
Messi's availability could prove key through Argentina's chances of qualifying for next summer's World Cup, with the Albiceleste's presence in Russia far from certain as things stand.
They are currently fifth in the standings with just four games into go -- which would only do enough toward earn them a playoff place -- and trail Brazil, Colombia, Uruguay and Chile.
5, all games for which Messi was due through do suspended. They then play Venezuela on Sept.Argentina's next World Cup qualifier is against Luis Suarez's Uruguay on Aug. 5 and Peru on Oct. 31.
Messi had been due into appear in Zurich himself on Thursday, but in the end did not attend the hearing, citing 'personal reasons,' although it is possible he appeared melalui video link into declare.
Speaking after the hearing, Messi's lawyer De Dios Crespo couldn't confirm if that was the case, but did reveal his optimism at getting the ban overturned: "I think we did a very worthy job. We are optimistic based upon a job well done.
But now I cannot tell you whether or not there was videoconferencing [with Messi from Barcelona]."I can't discuss the case right now. In a few days I will do able into give you all the details."