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Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini banned from football for eight years

The Fifa’s Ethics Committee announced their decision on Monday morning

The logo of the global football's governing body FIFA is seen on October 3, 2013 at its headquarters in Zurich. FIFA kicked off a crunch meeting behind closed doors, amid claims of rights abuses by 2022 World Cup Qatar and wrangling over plans to hold the tournament in the winter. AFP PHOTO / FABRICE COFFRINI (Photo credit should read FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images)

Former Fifa president Sepp Blatter and Uefa chief Michel Platini have received eight year bans on Monday morning. Photograph:

Sepp Blatter and the longtime Fifa president’s one-time heir apparent, Michel Platini, have been banned from football for eight years, ending the career of the former and definitively derailing the vaulting ambitions of the latter.

The Fifa ethics committee, chaired by the German judge Hans-Joachim Eckert, has ruled that both men should be banned despite their protestations that they did nothing wrong when Blatter paid the Uefa president 2m Swiss francs in 2011, nine years after both men claimed it was originally due.

Fifa was thrown into crisis in May when Swiss police raided the five-star Baur au Lac hotel and nine senior football officials were indicted in the US on charges including money laundering and racketeering. Last month, a further indictment followed against a further 16 individuals.

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Under huge pressure, Blatter agreed to stand down in June a few days after being re-elected for a fifth term as president. Platini quickly emerged as the favourite to succeed him, much to the public chagrin of his one-time mentor.

Blatter appeared personally before the ethics committee on Thursday, protesting his innocence in a letter to all 209 Fifa members in which he likened the process to the Spanish inquisition. Platini refused to appear in person, with his lawyers conducting the nine-hour hearing before Eckert and three other judges. But the Frenchman railed against the ethics committee’s provisional 90-day suspension and complained of ulterior political motives to force him out of the race to succeed Blatter.

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